Fresh off gaining county approval for a large Audi-anchored development in Goochland, Larry Page isn’t letting up on the accelerator.
His Page Auto Group, which owns eight local dealerships, has plans to open a new Alfa Romeo showroom on West Broad Street in what will be the first Richmond location for the Italian automaker.
Page said he has a letter of intent to bring Alfa Romeos to Richmond and should have them on his lot in about two months. The cars will be sold out of Page’s lot at 9001 W. Broad St., which currently houses his Volkswagen, Audi and Maserati dealerships.
Starting out, he said he’ll have about 10 of Alfa Romeo’s 4C model, which has a Coupe and Spider version start at around $55,000-$65,000. Later in the year he’ll look to stock the brand’s new Giulia sedan and eventually a sport utility vehicle that’s in the works.
The deal with Alfa Romeo isn’t the first time Page has had the taste for Italian. Last year he launched Maserati of Richmond, also the first Richmond location for that Italian brand.
Alfa Romeo is owned by FCA Group, which controls Fiat, Chrysler, Dodge, Jeep, Maserati and other brands. The nearest Alfa Romeo dealerships to Richmond are in Fredericksburg and Newport News. There are also dealers in Washington, D.C., and Roanoke.
Page will soon have more room for the new cars at his West Broad location. He received unanimous approval this week from the Goochland County Board of Supervisors for his plan to build an 18-acre commercial development just west of the Henrico County line.
The project will be anchored by a 41,000-square-foot Audi dealership that’s to replace his current West Broad Audi. His Maserati business will then take over the existing Audi space, freeing up Maserati’s current showroom for additional business.
Page said the Goochland plan was prompted by the need for more space and by Audi’s desire for him to give the brand its own standalone dealership in Richmond.
“We are out of service capacity at our current facility and Audi was pushing us to go exclusive,” he said.
The new location will allow him hold between 200 and 225 Audis on the lot. That’s nearly double his capacity currently. He said the Audi Q7 and Q5 are the popular models at the moment.
“I’d stock 100 of both of those models right now if I could,” he said.
Page said he liked the Broad Street Road location in Goochland because it abuts Route 288, providing easy access for customers. He said about half of his Audi customers live in Chesterfield and many of them work in that western end of Henrico.
He worked with Clarke Jones of Jones Realty and Construction to assemble the various parcels needed for the 18-acre project over a two-year period.
Jones said they searched for a location that would be as close to an interstate as possible.
“By being at 288 and Broad you have the best of both worlds,” Jones said.
Page said he was initially only looking for enough land for the dealership, but ended up spending upwards of $6 million to acquire surrounding plots.
“We only needed about 4.5 acres for Audi, but I just felt like it was a really good growth
opportunity for us to diversify a little bit,” he said.
This week’s county approval gave Page the green light for the necessary zoning and conditional use permit for the development. He’ll next have to submit additional construction plans, which should take place in about month. Construction would take about 18 months.
While the Audi location is the initial priority and will be the first piece built, Page’s plans call for several additional phases of construction of at least 45,000 square feet on the surrounding acreage.
The additional buildings will be built as tenants are lined up. Page and Jones said potential tenants include hotels, restaurants, offices and retail.
Page said they’ve spoken with some prospective tenants, but it’s too soon to strike any deals.
“We have a lot of interest and we haven’t started marketing it,” he said.