2016-06-24 / Front Page

Town council approves lobster pound parking at municipal lot

By Michael Kelley Staff Writer


Bayley’s Lobster Pound and the town have reached a deal that allows the nearby seafood market and restaurant to use public parking spaces at Hurd Park at Pine Point Beach for valet parking from 5 p.m. to dusk now through Sept. 15. (Michael Kelley photo) Bayley’s Lobster Pound and the town have reached a deal that allows the nearby seafood market and restaurant to use public parking spaces at Hurd Park at Pine Point Beach for valet parking from 5 p.m. to dusk now through Sept. 15. (Michael Kelley photo) Beach-goers will not be the only ones parking at Hurd Park to experience what Pine Point has to offer. Last week, the town council approved an agreement with Bayley’s Lobster Pound to use Hurd Park – the municipal parking lot for Pine Point Beach – for overflow parking for the Bait Shed, the 15-table restaurant the Bayley family opened two years ago.

The agreement states Bayley’s will be able to use the lot for overflow parking between 5 p.m. and dusk now through Sept. 15. Although parking is free during that time, Bayley’s will be charged $2,000 for the use of the lot. The money, Town Manager Tom Hall said, will be placed in the beach reserve account, a fund that is used for maintenance projects and improvements at Scarborough beaches.

“I like the concept,” said Councilor Shawn Babine. “I think it is a good idea.”

Hall told councilors June 15 that the town originally looked into having an arrangement for Bayley’s to use the grassy area the town uses for overflow beach parking, but after talking to abutters who weren’t keen on the idea, use of the paved municipal lot was looked to as the best option.

In a June 9 memo to councilors, Hall said he sees this “as an opportunity to raise some money, support a local business and alleviate potential parking problems in the neighborhood.”

Hall said at the town council meeting, he wouldn’t be surprised if other eateries, such as Salty Bay Take Out, which recently got a permit to serve alcohol, look for a similar arrangement next year.

The agreement automatically renews each year and in future years will be good from May 15 to Sept. 15. It can be terminated by either party with 30 days notice, something the council amended from the original 90 days notice provision in the draft agreement.

“Thirty days is sufficient notice,” Councilor Kate St. Clair said. Ninety days, she added, was too long.

Susan Bayley, who co-owns the 100-year-old family business, said the parking lot will be used for valet parking. Because the business has several other parking lots, Bayley said she doesn’t anticipate taking up much more than 15 spaces at a time in the lot, which Hall said has more than 400 spaces.

“From a customer service standpoint, we want to make sure our customers are getting the best service possible,” she said.

Bayley said the arrangement should work well given that the peak time for the lot to be used by beach-goers is during the day, whereas the peak time, and biggest need for parking for Bayley’s, is between 5 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. when customers are stopping by the Lobster Pound to pick up lobster and other seafood for dinner or dining at the restaurant, which overlooks the confluence of the Nonesuch and Scarborough rivers.

Bayley said generally her customers do not face a parking issue, except for some days in July and August when individuals going to the beach, Bayley’s, the Clam Bake restaurant, the Pine Point Co-Op and the town pier are all battling for parking spaces.

Although he voted to support the agreement, Councilor Peter Hayes said he would prefer that the council limits Bayley’s to a certain number of spaces in order to ensure as many spaces in the lot are made available to people heading to the beach for the evening.

“The concern I would have is the balance between business use and public use,” he said.

“We need to keep in mind we need to make sure there is enough for the public to have access,” he added.

Hall said he has been “assured” by his staff there are plenty of spaces available in the lot after 5 p.m.

While there won’t be specific spots assigned for the restaurant, Bayley said there should not be a fight over spaces because the valets for the restaurant will be parking in the spots closest to the restaurant while beachgoers would park nearer the shore.

Hall said he will report back to the council at the end of the summer as to how the agreement went and the demands it created on the parking lot.

Staff Writer Michael Kelley can be reached at news@scarboroughleader.com.

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