Islanders hop in line to make that paint shine

New automated car wash already a hit with locals.

Naomi Paulson drives her sparkling-clean car out of the car wash.

After the Northline Shell station opened its doors, Islanders rejoiced at not having to travel into a downtown area to fuel up. When the Mobil gas station that once occupied the space lost its lease to Depot Corner owner Louis Paciello, folks had to head into downtown Edgartown or make the trek to Up-Island Auto to fill their tanks.

After a laborious construction process with multiple delays, the new Shell gas station finally opened in late October. Instead of selling the building and the car wash to Paciello, previous owner Michael Rotondo decided to level both structures.

Even after the station opened, the question remained: When would the car wash open up?

Well, the wait is over, and folks are lining up to give their cars a wash before the winter salt and sand sets in. Cars emerged from the wash with sparkling paint and wheels washed of black brake dust, their owners smiling from ear to ear.

Islander Serdar Mommadov said the last time he got his car washed was off-Island at another automated wash. “I was coming back on the open-air ferry and the waves splashed over my car,” Mommadov said. Mommadov said he was excited to wash the saltwater from his vehicle.

Naomi Paulson said she had been anticipating the automated car wash for a long time: “I am so excited, I was driving here with a big smile.” Paulson chose the ultimate wash package, complete with multicolored deep-cleaning foam, clear coat sealant to protect paint from sun damage and corrosion, a wax coat for that extra sparkle, and a powerful drying at the end to eliminate water spots.

As customers drive through the car wash, an automated voice talks them through the process, telling them when to stop their car and when to move forward. Instead of driving onto a set of tracks that move the car forward through the cleaning process, the Ryko brand car wash uses an arch system that moves back and forth to spray the car. Gregory Marcella said he hadn’t gotten a wash since the Mobil gas station closed. “I used to get a wash every time I filled my car up with gas, just to get all the road dirt off,” Marcella said. “I am 100 percent satisfied with the job. Sometimes the machine washes aren’t as thorough, but it looks like this one did a pretty good job.”

General manager of the gas station Jen Medeiros said people are pleased with the car wash, and with the gas station in general. “I don’t think I’ve ever seen people so happy about washing their cars; everyone just loves it,” Medeiros said.



  1. Why would people have to “head into downtown Edgartown or make the trek to Up-Island Auto to fill their tanks.”? I mean, there are multiple gas stations in VH and OB as well.

  2. Why does the times always have to comment about Michael Rotundo and the fact that he tore down the old gas station and car wash??? It was his property to do with as he wished and he did…get over it. Lastly, he did have a partner in the business but you never see his name mentioned…

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