Waterfront Development News

Waterfront Development News

Minutes from Washington, D.C. on the Potomac River, Old Town Alexandria delights travelers from all over the world. A busy seaport from colonial times through the Civil War and even during World War II when the Torpedo Factory Art Center was a naval torpedo factory, Alexandria’s waterfront is currently undergoing a major revitalization. Here’s what’s new, what’s now and what’s next.

What's Next

Jeyifous Concept

2020 Public Art Installation Wrought, Knit, Labors, Legacies

The second temporary art installation in the Site See: New Views in Old Town annual public art series at Alexandria’s Waterfront Park will be on display late March to November 2020. Wrought, Knit, Labors, Legacies by Olalekan Jeyifous frames Alexandria’s African American history through the lens of the city’s industrial and merchant history from the 17th to 20th centuries. Once a prosperous port city that was home to one of the largest domestic slave trading firms in the country, Alexandria was a major center for shipping and manufacturing with an economy inextricably tied to the work of enslaved and free African Americans. Wrought, Knit, Labors, Legacies seeks to stitch Alexandria’s story together, featuring symbols that represent Alexandria’s merchant and manufacturing history, including factories, tobacco warehouses and railways.

What's New

Tall Ship Providence

Celebrity Tall Ship Providence

Alexandria recently welcomed a new maritime history experience to the Old Town waterfront: tall ship Providence, which arrived in the summer of 2019 and will open for tours and cruises in 2020. This celebrity tall ship, which has appeared in the international blockbuster Pirates of the Caribbean, is a full-scale reproduction of one of the most renowned ships in the Continental Navy. Tours include family pirate cruises, adult pirate cruises, craft beer cruises and occasional evening cruises. 

Portside 10

New Waterfront Experience at the Foot of King Street

One of the most highly anticipated transformations of the Old Town Alexandria waterfront unfolded in 2019 with the opening of a new expansion of Waterfront Park at the foot of King Street. The greatly expanded new park area seamlessly connects Old Town’s historic retail corridor with the water and features four distinct areas—an open plaza, a waterfront promenade, shade structures and a modular space that can adapt to different purposes throughout the year. The park, which is adjoined to the original Waterfront Park, is designed for ongoing enjoyment and special activations and events. Waterfront Park is also the location for the new public-art series, Site See: New Views in Old Town. The initiative brings contemporary public art installations to Alexandria that change from year to year.

What’s Now

water taxi wharf

Water Taxi to DC’s The Wharf

DC’s Southwest Waterfront is undergoing a $1.5 billion redevelopment known as “The Wharf,” which features a mile-long stretch along the Potomac River with concert venues like The Anthem, restaurants, retailers, residences, and businesses. Potomac Riverboat Company offers high-speed water taxi service from Alexandria’s waterfront to The Wharf. Groundbreaking of Phase II of The Wharf is expected to be finished in 2021.

Hotel Indigo

Hotel Indigo Old Town Alexandria & Hummingbird

Alexandria welcomed its first waterfront hotel in May 2017, the highly anticipated Hotel Indigo Old Town Alexandria. Touches of Alexandria’s colonial past blend with contemporary design at the boutique hotel, nestled on a riverside site where a 300-year old ship was discovered and excavated during the hotel’s development. Located inside the hotel, Hummingbird is the creation of James Beard nominee Cathal Armstrong. Earning high praise from The Washington Post, this airy eatery offers beautiful views of the Potomac River from the dining room and outdoor patio. Hummingbird is an energetic bar and kitchen inspired by the American spirit of cherished traditions: clambakes and crab boils, fish fries and oyster roasts.

MGM Resort and Casino

MGM National Harbor

Accessible via water taxi or the NH2 shuttleMGM National Harbor, is one of the DC area’s hottest entertainment destinations. Located on the banks of the Potomac just over the bridge from Old Town Alexandria, MGM National Harbor is the premier luxury resort and casino experience on the East Coast. MGM National Harbor features a casino floor bigger than the White House, a 15,000 square foot conservatory with breathtaking displays that change seasonally, fine dining from world renowned chefs such as José Andrés and the Voltaggio brothers, and an intimate 3,000-seat theater where you can experience the biggest names in entertainment.

Couple on Water Taxi

River Cruises and Water Connectivity to the Region

Visitors can access the region with Potomac Riverboat Company’s many cruises and water taxis, including ones to George Washington’s Mount Vernon, The Wharf, Georgetown, Nationals Stadium and Audi Field, and National Harbor.


Photos submitted by Alexandria visitors like you.