Ocean City Today

Traffic coordination key to good business

Readers Forum
Jul 20, 2017



printed 07/21/2017



In a resort town like ours, there are times when a community improvement takes place but very few realize that they are the direct beneficiaries of this positive action.

Here is a businessperson’s perspective about this season’s traffic viewed from a window overlooking Coastal Highway in north Ocean City.

Ocean City is experiencing some of its largest crowds ever this year with some weekends being better than others. Usually the bug-a-boo is traffic congestion since Coastal Highway is one nine-mile strip north to south. This summer even when there is heavy traffic on the weekends, there have been relatively few major traffic snarls.

The police, the State Highway Administration and Ocean City town officials are working together to be sure there are as few problems as possible. I never thought I would be able to say this, but traffic light coordination is a beautiful thing.

Good things are happening in other aspects of local resort transportation.

One very positive sign is that bus ridership is up about 5 percent on some days by most reports. There are more and better buses, and they are scheduled properly to help make the bus ride an almost “pleasurable experience.” Not to belabor the issue, but this is a very positive sign and it helps make all visitors (and locals) very happy.

Safe and easy driving may seem like a minor issue to some, but this is an important element in Ocean City’s success this summer.

Diners can get to their restaurants of choice and shoppers can get to their shops and store of their choices, including one of our advertising agency clients, White Marlin Mall in West Ocean City.

Driving from north Ocean City to downtown to go across the Route 50 bridge used to be a big hassle. In fact when leaving our North Ocean City office, I used to take the Route 90 Bridge out of town, drive by Ocean Pines, and loop around Berlin to drive back to West Ocean City on Route 50 to stop by White Marlin Mall.

While there will be some slow downs during inclement weather and when tourists arrive and depart at the same time, getting around Ocean City has become as good as it is ever going to get. Given the town’s natural roadway limitations, today’s ease of travel is a working example of maximum traffic efficiency.

Although we don’t want to overstate the issue, it is a tenant of retail management that if shoppers can’t get to West Ocean City in a fairly quick and easy fashion, they are less likely to shop at White Marlin Mall and neighboring shopping establishments.

This summer in large part, we can report that there is usually a straight shot from north Ocean City, heading south on Coastal Highway to West Ocean City. This is great news as an aide to family shopping and helps insure safer travels around the greater Ocean City area.

Psychologically, the thought that one can get from one end of Ocean City to the other is very important to all visitors. Our guests visit the beach to take a break from their routine.

In theory and practice, tourists need to feel free and unencumbered when they visit us. They want to do what they feel like doing, when they want to do it.

Assisting tourists via good traffic management to get them to where they wish to go is an important and sometimes unappreciated factor. This is something that Ocean City is doing right and we know it definitely is helping White Marlin Mall and other West Ocean City businesses.

Now, if we could only get the beachgoers on Coastal Highway to cross at the street corners; but that’s another story.

We hope all our summer visitors and local businesses have an enjoyable and prosperous summer.

Paul Jankovic

Ocean City Advertising Agency

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