Planning Commission to consider expanding auto detailing service on Richmond Road

The Williamsburg Planning Commission will consider approving a special-use permit for Magic Touch Auto Detailing at a public hearing Wednesday.

The auto shop at 1457 Richmond Road is looking to expand into the retail space next door to offer new services and bring more local business to the heavily trafficked road and tourist hangout, according to Mohammed Bawaieh, the store’s manager.

“We’re trying to create more jobs for citizens and locals, and we’re also trying to encourage more local businesses,” said Bawaieh. “In Williamsburg, we don’t really have too many local businesses, we mostly just have franchises, so when you have more local businesses in the town, it brings more life to the town.”

Magic Touch was granted a permit to produce and install auto decals, stickers and signs when it first opened in 2013. That permit would allow the store to offer services, including interior and exterior auto detailing and installing window tinting, in the new retail space, which would be at 1455 Richmond Road.

According to the current regulations under the city’s comprehensive plan published in 2013, the shop would qualify as a “corridor commercial” property due to its focus on automobile servicing. As such, certain commercial uses in the space require a special-use permit from the city’s Planning Commission. The plan states that corridor commercial properties are “intended to promote the city’s economic development policy for its limited, remaining high-visibility commercial sites.”

The permit would ensure the auto shop complies with the city’s adopted comprehensive plan and does not damage or discourage the development of any surrounding businesses.

Magic Touch Auto Detailing is owned by Baganakis Corporation, a local organization that owns other businesses on Richmond Road, including Mama Steve’s House of Pancakes. The new expansion would bring at least two new jobs, if approved.

“That’s my goal. We’re looking to have at least five people in both shops for now,” Bawaieh said. “We are trying to create more jobs for citizens by having three employees including myself (in the new space).”

If the special-use permit is granted, the shop’s manager says he plans to begin investigating an additional store location and to expand the mobile service offered by the auto shop, which allows customers to have their car accessories delivered and installed at their homes.

“If everything works out, we’ll probably be looking for another location to open another shop,” Bawaieh said. “We’re still going step by step.”

Want to attend?

The Williamsburg Planning Commission is expected to make a final decision on the permit during its public hearing at 3:30 p.m. Wednesday at the Stryker Center in the City Council chambers.

Arriaza can be reached at 757-790-9313 or on Twitter @rodrigoarriaza0.

Copyright © 2018, The Virginia Gazette