Structure Type: built works - social and civic buildings; representations - drawings - plans

Designers: Howells and Stokes, Architects (firm); Abraham Horace Albertson (architect); John Mead Howells (architect); Isaac Newton Phelps Stokes (architect)

Dates: constructed 1907

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Downtown, Seattle, WA 98101

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The Metropolitan Tract roughly encompassed the parcel of land enclosed by Seneca Street (south), 3rd Avenue (east), Union St (north), and 6th Avenue (east).

Building History

By 1928, the Unversity of Washington-owned Metropolitan Tract had been operated since 1909 by a development and management company called the "Metropolitan Building Company." During this roughly twenty-year span, the Metropolitan Building Company had succeeded in erecting well over two dozen office and other commercial buildings comprising a new central business district for Seattle. This centrally-planned ensemble of buildings attracted many of the leading lumber, fishing, and transportation companies to lease space here, and provided an office hub for lawyers, physicians and dentists. It also became an entertainment nexus, boasting important retail space, a first-class hotel, two major theatres (hosting various cultural events) and an ice arena. As was noted in a Metropolitan Building Company advertisement in 1928: "This ten-acre unit of business blocks at the heart of Seattle's retail section is the city's fine hotel, shopping and theater district. Its seven buildings house 125 smart specialty shops, two theaters, and the office headquarters of the lumber industry, all transportation lines, and most of the major business, professional and commercial organizations of the Pacific Northwest. It is the largest unit of the kind west of the Mississippi, and was built and is operated by a single organization--The Metropolitan Building Co." (See R.L. Polk and Company's Seattle, Washington, City Directory, 1928, p. 107.)

PCAD id: 19430