Opinion: Commentary: Welcome Home to Alexandria!

Opinion: Commentary: Welcome Home to Alexandria!

Welcome to Alexandria! On behalf of my colleagues on City Council, I’d like to extend a warm welcome and thank you for choosing this historic community as your new home.

During our 270-year history, Alexandria has been a tobacco trading post; one of the 10 busiest ports in America; a part of the District of Columbia; home to both the nation’s largest slave trading firm and a large community of freed blacks; a Civil War supply center for Union troops; and a street-car suburb for federal workers. Today, Alexandria is a growing, urban community with an unparalleled quality of life. We’re a vibrant, diverse city of more than 150,000 people with a small-town feel, but just minutes from the bustle of our nation’s capital.

There is so much to see and do. Our parks and green spaces are a haven for nature lovers, walkers and bicyclists, and we’re a transit-oriented community, offering many options for getting around town and beyond. We’re a destination for foodies, a haven for shoppers, and a place where the arts thrive. Alexandria is an Eco-City, committed to protecting and sustaining our natural resources. We’re a great place for young people and a caring community.

Alexandria is also a hub of innovation, home to national, regional, and local businesses, tech startups, creative firms, trade associations and nonprofits. We host the headquarters of the United States Patent and Trademark Office and the National Science Foundation, and we will soon welcome Virginia Tech’s cutting-edge Innovation Campus. It is truly an exciting time to be here!

We are a diverse city of kindness and compassion — a thriving community of engaged residents with a strong commitment to community service and charity. We are an accepting and embracing community where we treat each other with human dignity and respect. People of diverse race, color, culture, nationality, gender, age, physical ability, sexual orientation and gender identity live and work together in Alexandria and bring pride and prosperity to our community.

In Alexandria, we have a strong tradition of community, government, and organizations working together to help shape our future and support our most vulnerable residents. We hope you will consider the many options available, including serving on a board or commission, attending City Council meetings, mentoring children, or taking advantage of other volunteer opportunities through the City or through its many nonprofit and charitable organizations. Please visit alexandriava.gov/Boards or alexandriava.gov/Volunteer for more information.

Finally, as you settle into your new home, there are bound to be questions. If you need any information about Alexandria’s government or services, please contact our customer information service, Call.Click.Connect., at 703-746-HELP (4357) during normal business hours. Call.Click.Connect. may also be accessed 24 hours a day, seven days a week, through the City’s website at alexandriava.gov. Please follow the City of Alexandria on social media and subscribe for our free Alexandria eNews service to receive email, text and voice notifications on the subjects that interest you, as well as important emergency alerts.