John Kraunelis is moving his insurance agency down Washington Road into one of the most historic buildings in West Barrington.
Do you remember the former West Barrington drug store on the corner of Bay Spring Avenue and Washington Street?
Kraunelis does. He grew up in that neighborhood and still lives there. More recently, the building housed Devine Catering, which moved to Warren.
“It had an original soda fountain,” said Kraunelis. “I’d go in there for candy and ice cream.”
“There’s a lot of history behind it,” said Kraunelis of that building, which is owned now by James Tavares of Bristol and which he has remodeled.
When it became available and with his lease expiring this month, Kraunelis said, he decided to relocate.
“It’s double the space I have now,” he said. “And I should have a lot more visibility.”
The actual address is 195 Washington Road. Kraunelis works now out of 185 Washington Road next door to Blue Moon Studio. He can still walk to work.
“I can’t see how the move will hurt me,” he said.
The remodeling by Tavares is turning the building into a professional office space, Kraunelis said.
“He’s worked with me to add a few things,” he said.
Kraunelis opened his agency in Barrington three years ago after a move from East Providence, where he spent seven years. Before that, he worked for an agency for 10 years in North Attleboro. He opened his own agency when he moved to East Providence.
A recent attempt to locate a convenience store in the same building failed because of a lack of off-street parking for that type of business.
Kraunelis said he has no more than four clients a day who might stop by – hardly any need for parking at the busiest intersection in West Barrington.
“So, I don’t think it will be a problem,” he said.
Kraunelis and several of his friends will be spending a lot of time this weekend moving into him his new digs, he said.
“It should be quite a Fourth of July,” he said.