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Cowles Nissan Expanding Dealership

WOODBRIDGE, Va. — Cowles Nissan will not only be getting a face lift, it’ll get a whole new building.

The auto dealership sits on U.S. 1 in Woodbridge, between Delaware Drive and Maryland Avenue, in front of a town home development and two apartment complexes.

The owner, Monte Cowles, said he’s investing $5.5 million into the business to build a new dealership building next to the old one on the same six acres of property. The new building will be more modern, more uniform with the designs of other Nissan dealerships, and it will be 35% larger than the older building that was built in the 1970s.

Unlike Cowles Ford (owned by another member of the Cowles family), which moved away from it’s site on U.S. 1 in north Woodbridge to a new location on Prince William Parkway and left behind an empty lot, that won’t happen here.

“The owner has decided to stay on this site rather than move and leave behind another empty site,” said spokesman Jay Du Von. “We already have plenty of empty sites.”

The building now faces U.S. 1, but the new building will face Maryland Avenue. Its new main entrance will be also be located on the avenue. Drivers will still be able to access the dealership from U.S. 1 via a side entrance.

“People will still be able to see us from Route 1 because the building sits up higher than the old one, and it can easily be seen,” said Cowles.

A tall Nissan sign will be moved closed to the intersection of U.S. 1 and Maryland Avenue, and a shorter sign will be erected at U.S. 1 and Delaware Drive.

All of the dealership’s car inventory will continued to be stored on site, preventing the need for the owner to rent space to store cars in an industrial area. More trees and bushes will also be planted around the parking lot widening the buffer zone between the dealership and adjacent homes.

“I think those who live in the homes are already used to having a car dealership as a neighbor,” said Du Von.

The plans still need to be ratified by the Prince William County Planning Commission and the Board of Supervisors. If all goes well, construction could begin this summer and would take six to nine months to complete.

“Now we have to go and figure out how to pay for it all,” Cowles quipped.

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