A beneficial attribute of a tourist destination to have is areas specifically for walking traffic.
The orange shaded areas in the map on page 72 are exclusively for walking traffic and should have a ‘boardwalk’ type atmosphere. Considering the cost, and periodic flooding, a traditional wooden-built boardwalk may not be feasible, but the existing asphalt could be painted to a neutral color that won’t absorb heat.
This will be an extensive project in itself, and require obtaining support from businesses and individuals who own property west of 9th St. For this to happen these people/entities will have to understand the purpose, know extensive details about the ultimate result, and all facets relevant to costs/profit pertaining to the Walking Corridor. Essentially, they will have to be presented with substantial evidence that a Walking Corridor will be extremely profitable, which will require producing a plan specifically for this purpose.
Design of the Walking Corridor:
The map on the following page shows a portion of W. Main St., at the bottom is the intersection of 10th St. The color-code, shown left to right on the map, is as follows:
➢ Grey: This represents the sidewalk areas in front of businesses, and with having a Walking Corridor, sidewalks would no longer be needed and this space could be utilized to generate commercial activity.
If/WHEN the Walking Corridor is approved, an initiative should be launched immediately to encourage/assist/facilitate property owners to renovate and establish TSA&SA’s. If possible, businesses along westbound lane of W. Main St. should be permitted to expand their operations onto the sidewalk to allow for outdoor seating, covered decks, displaying merchandise outside, etc.
Businesses need to have an ‘openness,’ which provides an inviting atmosphere and allow people to look inside an establishment before entering. Since walking into a business and immediately turning around if you’re not interested in their service may cause an uncomfortable situation, many people dislike going in somewhere without knowing what that place offers first.
➢ Orange: This is the existing road area that would be open to walking-traffic only.
➢ Green: Benches for seating.
➢ Blue: These represent the signs for the ‘Legacy Wall.’ (covered on pages 62-65)
➢ Black: This is a guard-rail that would run along the length of the Walking Corridor protecting pedestrians from stepping into the outbound vehicle traffic on Main St.
Attractions in the Walking Corridor:
The tourist-based businesses, collectively, will serve as attractions themselves. Additionally, many enjoy just watching the people walking by, and to be candid, people are actually a form of entertainment themselves.
➢ Street-Performers: There are countless types and styles that interest tourists. Even though this is a popular attraction, it’s essential that all regulatory issues are considered. Ocean City was recently in legal issues involving the rights of street performers.
➢ Props for Photos: These are very popular, and since most will share their pics on social media, props that include Crisfield’s name – which they all should – will also serve as a free marketing tool.
Some of the props could be oversized boots, pirate characters with face cutouts, etc.