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Alexandria Hyundai owner says special use permit puts dealership’s future on the line

Alexandria Hyundai has been taking up space on three blocks of Mount Vernon Avenue for 21 years, and owner Kevin Reilly is submitting a plan to be able to stay on the Avenue for at least 20 more.

Hyundai wants upgrades at their dealerships, Reilly says, and that means he has to build a service drive-thru lane and service reception areas.

“What I’m asking for is to continue on the avenue essentially, that’s what it comes down to,” Reilly said at a recent Del Ray Business Association meeting.

The issue is that Reilly’s dealership runs against the city’s Mount Vernon Avenue Business Area Plan, which calls for a more walkable community with more mixed use retail and housing.

“(Automobile dealership) uses are inconsistent with the Potomac West Small Area Plan and with the existing zoning that does not allow automobile-oriented uses such as automobile dealerships. Although it is unlikely that either dealership property will redevelop in the foreseeable future, mixed-use buildings, with ground floor retail and residences or offices above would be compatible with adjacent residences and would complement the Historic Core and the nearby retail area at Mt. Vernon and Monroe Avenues.”

The plan includes:

  • A 770 square foot canopy to a 1,730 square foot service reception addition
  • A 1,500 square foot service reception area to their showroom lot in the 1800 block of Mount Vernon Avenue
  • The addition of four New Electrify America electric vehicle spaces with fast chargers for public access

Reilly, who is a former Del Ray Business Association president, says that the four New Electrify America electric vehicle chargers are a gift to the community.

“It takes 30 minutes or so to charge your vehicle,” Reilly said. “What do you do with 30 minutes? You’re walking up and down the Avenue and availing yourself of all the wonderful businesses here.”

Alexandria Hyundai’s plan goes before the Planning Commission on June 7 and City Council on June 18. If approved, Reilly anticipates six-to-eight months for construction.

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