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City, dealers help pave way for sales

Auto Row: Officials, owners celebrate partnership for road-renovation project

Posted: April 27, 2011 1:55 a.m.
Updated: April 27, 2011 1:55 a.m.

Mayor Marsha McLean holds a pair of scissors as she joins Don Fleming, president of the Santa Clarita Auto Dealers Association, third from right in front row, City Council members and representatives from local auto dealerships on The Signal’s lawn during a ribbon-cutting ceremony for the completion of the Creekside Road streetscape-improvement ...

City officials and Valencia Auto Center business owners officially cut the ribbon on Creekside Road improvements Tuesday, culminating a city-business partnership aimed at drawing more SCV residents and other customers to Southern California’s largest auto mall, where 23 different vehicle brands are sold.

Don Fleming, president of the Santa Clarita Valley Auto Dealers Association summed up the project as one that both beautifies the street and enhances public safety and parking, all combining to attract more customers and more business to Creekside.

Fleming added that local auto sales benefits the community by increasing sales-tax revenue.

The street and landscape improvements were funded by the city’s Landscape Maintenance District program; businesses made up of the SCV auto dealers paid for the development and maintenance of the roadside improvements.

“I want to mention that this project was funded by the businesses that benefit from the improvements,” said Mayor Marsha Mclean. “The auto dealers paid for this through the landscape maintenance zone.”

SCV auto dealers annually contribute 24 percent, or $6.5 million, to the Santa Clarita general fund and employ around 1,000 people, city officials said.

The general fund, in turn, supports valuable community services such as roads, parks and public safety personnel.

The pedestrian-friendly improvements include three new crosswalks with “bulb-outs” — garden seating areas with drought-tolerant landscape and stone veneer pavers.

Creekside’s center lane has been concrete-stamped and painted to resemble a cobblestone lane between Valencia Boulevard and Auto Center Drive. Street signs directing visitors to the auto dealers and other local businesses line the street.

McLean stressed the importance for SCV residents to shop locally and buy their cars from SCV dealers. Sales tax collected in Santa Clarita stays in Santa Clarita and is spent to enhance local law enforcement services, our parks and sports fields and our roads.

Fleming thanked McLean, Santa Clarita City Council members and City Manager Ken Pulskamp for their dedication to the business community.

“The city was recently awarded the most business-friendly city in Los Angeles County, and this is a perfect example of business friendly,” Fleming said.

A celebratory luncheon with the auto dealership owners and general managers, Signal executives, city leaders and dignitaries, and all others attending the ceremonies was served on the lawn of The Signal.

Dignitaries included McLean and other council members, Pulskamp, and representatives for Assemblyman Cameron Smyth, R-Santa Clarita, state Sen. Tony Strickland, R-Thousand Oaks, state Sen. Sharon Runner, R-Lancaster and Los Angeles County Supervisor Michael Antonovich.


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