Just in time for summer, visitors to New Bedford's Pier 3 can get ready to eat some lobster rolls, scallops, fish and chips, and of course, clams. Today, we learned that the Whale's Tail Clam Bar on Pier 3 has received the green light from the state to open once again.

The Clam Bar, which is owned and operated by the owner of The Black Whale, Steve Silverstein, was able to open without state authorization last year. This year, the Clam Bar's reopening, originally scheduled for April, had been put in jeopardy with opposition citing a state law that gives favor to activities that actually need direct access to the harbor in areas designated as working waterfront.

In other words, a restaurant like a clam shack can exist on Pier 3, but it can certainly also exist on Union Street in New Bedford.

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Massachusetts Senator Mark Montigny, however, says that the Whale's Tail Clam Bar on Pier 3 is part of a bigger vision for New Bedford that he has been working towards for years.

"The proposed supporting use as a clam shack restaurant compliments my long-term vision and work in the Massachusetts State Senate to diversify the city’s waterfront in a manner that will enhance our existing maritime uses while drawing the public closer to our unique working waterfront," he said.

So just because the clam shack is not water dependent, that doesn't necessarily mean it can't be on Pier 3.

Today, we learned that the state Department of Environmental Protection Waterways Regulation Program agrees with Montigny, and it granted approval to the clam bar's application.

The "shed" building that will once again house the clam shack will not be able to change its footprint on the pier without further approval from the Department of Environmental Protection.

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