King Street in old town Alexandria Virginia is the heart of the original commercial district dating back to colonial days. 250 years ago, the east end of King Street, where the street ends at the Potomac River was surrounded by warehouses, and fish smoking and drying sheds. Today the east end of King Street, the last couple of blocks, are home to a dozen or so restaurants, and a delightful collection of boutiques. Even some local and independent retailers. It is the high rent district.
As COVID started to ease, and outdoor dining was deemed safest, the last block of King was closed to traffic so the restaurants could expand tables out onto the street. It proved popular. It also eased traffic at one of the worst intersections in the historic district, King and Union.
The decision has been made to permanently close that block to cars. To allow the merchants to expand into the street. To create a natural home for musicians. I have heard this man play before, behind the Torpedo Factory Arts Center on the pier. There is more foot traffic on King Street, the tip bucket was filling nicely.
Not all pedestrian zones work, sometimes they kill the businesses. This short one block zone, seems to really work. There was a loss of probably 40 parking spaces, but there are garages in the surrounding streets (a couple of them are $2.50 an hour and easy to park in.)
It is a fantastic place to spend a Friday, or any other day. If the violinists are playing it is even better.
I love when cities do this!!!! It doesn't have to be all money making. These places give a nice sense of community.ReplyDelete
This one really worksDelete
So great when this works. And, wow, cheap parking! Unheard of.ReplyDelete
There are two parking garages on one street, one is $10 an hour, the other one $2.50 an hour. I am still a little stingyDelete
I like the idea; make the area walkable for people and have musicians and artists on the streets.ReplyDelete
There are art studios in the Torpedo Factory at the corner. https://torpedofactory.org/Delete
Look at that great big orange bucket for donations! They're optimistic, aren't they!ReplyDelete
They are good, and the money won't blow out of the bottom of the bucket.Delete
I'm glad to hear they are getting successful with the donations. Dining outside with lovely music in the background sounds wonderful.ReplyDelete
If there is a place where you might pay the bills doing this, the DC area is one of them.Delete
That’s one thing I miss living in a village.. the slight madness of a city street which can provide such wonderful entertainment and expressionReplyDelete
I think this a good idea; less traffic and more walking and more out of doors activities.ReplyDelete
I love this idea and wish more cities would make spaces like these.ReplyDelete