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Parking, Public Park Plans For New Ocean City Property

Parking, Public Park Plans For New Ocean City Property


January 16th 2024

Using its power of eminent domain, the city acquired the land in 2021 from Klause Enterprises to preserve it as open space after the Klause brothers proposed to develop the site for housing construction.

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The case went to court over the value of the land. In October, a jury decided that the city should pay Klause Enterprises nearly $17.9 million for the property. The grand total, however, is $20 million because of interest payments.

The property used to be home to the Perry-Egan auto dealership. The goal of the city was to stop the land from being developed. The Klause brothers proposed building 22 single-family homes on the land.

Currently, the tract is undergoing an environmental cleanup due to contamination believed to be from a former dry-cleaning business that was there at one time.

Officials said that while the short-term plan for the vacant land is a parking lot, there could be additional plans. Mayor Jay Gillian has said throughout the battle with the Klause brothers for the property that the goal is for it to be utilized for green space.

City officials have talked about incorporating the former Klause Enterprises property into a five-block corridor of public land that connects the city’s Emil Palmer Park, the Community Center and other public facilities in the area.

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