In 2005 and 2009, the City undertook Retail Studies for King Street. Given the Street’s role as the City’s center of commerce, civic affairs and cultural events since Alexandria’s founding in 1749, it is important that the vibrancy of the Street, its architectural and historic character, and its civic and cultural identity be preserved. With that, many of the recommendations in the studies are being implemented and are helping the City and its partners – the Economic Development community, the Historic and Arts communities and Citizens Organizations and the Public – promote initiatives to maintain and strengthen King Street’s character and vitality. Today, King Street is helping to attract 3 million visitors per year to Alexandria. As such, it is a local, regional and national asset and in 2011, for its distinct qualities, it received a American Planning Association’s Great Streets Award.
Such efforts to preserve and strengthen King Street’s unique and vibrant character have also been guided by the City’s Strategic Plan which lists as part of its Number One Goal to “Increase the vitality and economic success of the City Waterfront and King Street Corridor while maintaining and strengthening the City’s commitment to historic preservation and neighborhood quality of life.”