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.