A business friendly Alexandria City Council would support automobile dealerships

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By Stephanie Cabell, Alexandria
(File Photo) 

To the editor:

The Alexandria Time’s editorial in its March 27 issue about the fate of the two used auto dealerships on King Street (“Driving out local automobile dealerships is bad business”) was so right on. What is this city of ours coming to when it tries to remove two taxpaying, small businesses for arbitrary reasons?

Why are these two longstanding businesses considered undesirable while the two recently opened sex shops are deemed worthy of precious real estate along King Street? I have nothing against the so-called sex shops, but I am concerned about Alexandria’s decision-making processes. My guess is the city council is of the opinion that auto dealerships bring down property values, so to speak, or that tourists will walk by the lots and be turned off by their presence. There’s a subtext to this story that our elected officials are unwilling to reveal.

If it’s the physical appearance that is a concern, why doesn’t the city strategize with the dealerships’ owners on ways to spruce up their businesses’ exteriors? After all, Alexandria likes to tout its friendliness toward small businesses. Here’s a perfect test case for showing how business friendly the city really is.