Debate Over Request to Relocate Berlin Dollar General Ensues - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Debate Over Request to Relocate Berlin Dollar General Ensues

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BERLIN, Md.- The Planning and Zoning Commission in Berlin has denied a Pocomoke City developer's request to relocate the Dollar General, located off Route 113, to another nearby location.

Oxford Chase Development is the company behind the proposal. Developers hoped the store's spot, between a Food Lion and Subway, in the Berlin Run Shopping Center would be temporary. However, that will not be the case.

The company approached Berlin's Planning and Zoning Commission with the proposal to move the store to its own space across the highway. Mike Hamad, who owns a market across Route 113, also owns one of the lots the developer planned to use.

Howard Crossan, president of Oxford Chase, tells WBOC members of the commission were concerned about traffic safety, despite positive results from a study conducted by a traffic consultant and approved by the Maryland State Highway Administration in February. Elongating the left-hand turning lane was recommended by the agency, according to Crossan.

" When they turned down that proposal, they are condemning my property," Hamad said. "I don't think Dollar General is going to bring more traffic than it is now."

Crossan said the commission granted preliminary approval in January based on conditions that involved improvements to the landscape and façade of the building.

Town Administrator Laura Allen tells WBOC traffic was a secondary issue. Allen said there is a legal dispute between Hamad and a neighboring property owner over boundaries.
"It seems to be a question as to whether or not the Schmucks have access or some kind of right-of-way across Mr. Hamad's property,” Allen said.  “The project can't move forward without clarification.”

Allen said an appeal to the decision is not allowed in this process. Crossan said it is his right and will take his concerns to court.

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