Sears Automotive

A boarded-up retail space along a retail corridor in need of rethinking

About this Property

Reason for Demolition

A great loss to have this building gone? No, not really. It stood empty and boarded up for at least 15 years. Was it important to someone and therefore important to save in photographs? See the anecdotes.

In January 2007 the site was prepared for demolition and crews started removing the asbestos inside. Rumors immediately circulated about a Walgreens. In the fall of 2007 a Walgreens store did indeed open up, with a vacant Ethan Allen building right beside it. In a few more years the Ethan Allen was taken down as well (but it is still an empty lot).

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.

Current Events

This lot is the site of a Walgreens pharmacy with drive-thru prescription service.


Only maps have been able to give us some clues about the build date, which we place between 1962 and 1972 due to aerial photos.