Benny’s Automotive

A local-chain tire and automotive parts outlet with four car-wide drive-through bays on a local retail corridor.

About this Property

#Last Tenant

Benny’s was a home-grown chain of hardware/homeware stores throughout Rhode Island — it was home to “a little bit of everything.” It started in 1924 with a storefront on Fountain Street, Downtown Providence. They survived big-box and online competition until October 2017, when the last of their stores closed. It wasn’t a going-out-of-business story as much as it was a retirement story. The retail landscape shifted so much, and the stores were not growing their reach. A younger generation did not have the same affinity for locally-owned, quirky, low-bottom-line retail.

A great ode to Benny’s was written by Barry Fain for East Side Monthly.


The building itself is an “L” shaped box — nothing terribly interesting. The huge letters adorning the front and back of the building are great, though. We also love the small white, silver, and red tiles.

#Current Events

The site has been vacant since 2017. It is still in pretty good condition as Carpionato Properties seeks a new tenant.


No formal history. The property shows up on an aerial photograph from 1972, and the previous photo from 1962 shows different structures.