Ethan Allen

also known as Outlet Tire Center, Pilgrim House, Carriage House

This cinder block building with a residential looking store facade slapped on it stood vacant for many years before demolition. Part of the way commercial retail comes and goes.

About this Property

Reason for Demolition

It was never a pretty building. Its cinder block construction made it cheap to build and cheap to maintain. It was a box that surely had a new façade for every commercial tenant it saw. Was it worth saving from the wrecking ball? Probably not. Was it important to someone and therefore important to save in photographs? Surely.

Thoughts on how to “revive” this commercial district vary from person to person. For some, modernizing the stores and brands is enough. To others, suburban retail has no place in a dense city like Providence and this corridor should be converted to more office or residential use. To still others, they have a long-standing theory that divided roads (ones with a narrow median down the center) such as this one are doomed from the start.

The land that sits here now used to have a “Build to Suit” sign on it but that is long gone. An owner is difficult to track down. Miriam Hospital was a recent owner, as well as Brown University, but one or the other entered into a land swap deal with a private developer. Either way, this lot continues to sit. Is an empty lot better than a vacant and derelict building? Probably.

Current Events

This lot is still empty and undeveloped, fenced in, but growing weeds for the past 7 years (in 2020).