‘This is not an overnight process’: Businesses react to boulevard name change

Updated: Feb. 12, 2019 at 7:18 PM EST
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RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) -A Richmond City Council vote Monday night, means Boulevard is one step closer to being named after a tennis great and humanitarian from Richmond, Arthur Ashe.

“It’s the right thing to do. Arthur Ashe is one of the biggest heroes we have in Richmond in at least the last 100 years," said Mike Anderson, owner of Jackson and James, a clothing store in Scott’s Addition.

Anderson is also a member of the Scott’s Addition Boulevard Association who wrote a letter of support encouraging city council to rename the historic Boulevard.

The Scott’s Addition Boulevard Association says they were inspired after hearing from David Harris Jr. Ashe’s nephew.

Other businesses on the Boulevard say they support honoring Ashe, but some have concerns about financial impacts on their businesses, and wondering if there could have been another way to recognize him on the Boulevard.

“I don’t mind the change, I think it should have been Honorary Arthur Ashe. Now, I have to change my business cards, my work orders everything has to change with the address [change]," explained Jerry Devoss, owner of Devoss Auto Service. “I know it’s going to cost me some money, I just don’t know how much.”

Trevor Dickerson with the Scott’s Addition Boulevard Association says their next steps will be addressing any concerns the community or business owners might have.

“We are pleased to see the measure pass," said Dickerson. “The next step is to reach out to owners of businesses on the Boulevard who may not have been on board with the change. This is not an overnight process, this is going to have to go through different channels to get the signage made, and decide how we roll things out.”

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