ALEXANDRIA, Va, (WJLA) - A longstanding fight over a waterfront parking lot could be nearing a conclusion. The historic Old Dominion Boat Club sits along a historic pier and right next to that parking lot in Alexandria.
"It would be nice to have a little bigger area than just right here," says Arlington resident Carrissa Chadwick about the lot.
Chadwick would like to have some more play space for Cooper, and so would city leaders. In fact, a lot of people would like to see something a little more scenic than pavement.
"It is kind of an ugly parking lot," laughs Boat Club member Roger Amole.
Alexandria officials maintain that the city has negotiated with the Boat Club to remove the lot and put something more attractive and user friendly there for 15 years. But so far, there is no deal.
City officials are getting tired of negotiations which appear to be going nowhere, and are now considering just taking the parking lot.
"There is a law that supports that I guess, but I think that would be terrible," says Amole.
The Boat Club members are not too thrilled about the city’s decision to explore eminent domain, since Alexandria has the right to take the property if it determines there is an overriding need for the land.
"I hate to see eminent domain take its place, but it's really good land," says Alexandria resident Chuck Boyer.
At this point, the city is simply holding a hearing and gauging reaction to the eminent domain strategy. And some people aren't too happy about it.
"It's rotten," says Boat Club member Paul Rapchak. "It's absolutely ridiculous that they are going to steal it from us, it's absurd."
The city council would have to sign off on the move, and that would prove politically unappealing. The current council’s term is up in 2015