Downtown Westport just lost another gas station.
But the east end of town has gained some great automobile mechanics.
The latest station to yank its tanks is J&J Car Care Center. Nestled between the Westport Country Playhouse and Saugatuck Congregational Church, it opened in 1940 as a Tydol. From 1987 through late 2011 it was a Getty station. Then — in a small guys-vs.-big oil company dispute — owners Jay Oestreicher and John Fisher went independent and unbranded, which they remained until last month.
Now they’ve pulled up stakes, to a less expensive location a couple of miles away. Their new location is 1590 Post Road East. It’s next to Furniture on Consignment, across from the Westport Inn.
The transition has been almost seamless. Jay, John and their crack crew of Charlie and Chris are servicing cars as excellently as before.
With one exception: They no longer sell gas. All they do is mechanical work.
The money, Jay says, is not in gas for small operators. So they’ll concentrate on getting your car running, and leave the fill-ups to others.
No word on whether someone new will take over the old Getty spot — which, because it’s so close to the Post Road, must be full-serve only — or if that station will join the old Hallowell station on Main Street, and the one across from the old post station (Finalmente) as one more answer to a future Westport trivia question.