By Dan Moffett
As it waits to take ownership of Old Ocean Boulevard from the state, Briny Breezes is turning to its Planning and Zoning Board to develop new rules for the road.
Town Attorney John Skrandel told council members during their Feb. 25 meeting that he expects state officials to transfer the deed to Old Ocean to the town by the end of March, ending a clerical oversight that likely dates to the 1940s.
With ownership, the town also assumes responsibility for maintaining the road. Council members have expressed concern that construction projects in Ocean Ridge could send heavy trucks down Old Ocean and damage the pavement.
The council wants the planning board to research possible restrictions the town might put on traffic to protect its iconic seaside boulevard. Planning board Chairman Jerry Lower said it probably makes more sense to limit the number of axles on trucks rather than set weight restrictions, because the town has no scales with which to monitor cargo loads.
Police Chief Hal Hutchins told the council that when the planning board convenes this month, it should use the opportunity to take a look also at parking on Old Ocean and make recommendations for possible improvements.
“If you’re asking P and Z to look at restrictions on the roadway,” Hutchins said, “you can ask them to look at the total use of the roadway, too — not just weights on trucks.”
Editor’s note: Planning board Chairman Jerry Lower is publisher of The Coastal Star.