AKA: Grocery Outlet Supermarket, Burien, WA

Structure Type: built works - commercial buildings - markets

Designers: Becket, Welton D., and Associates, Architects (firm); Bradshaw, Richard, Structural Engineer (firm); Welton David Becket (architect); Richard Bradshaw (structural engineer)

Dates: constructed 1956

1 story

Burien, WA

Building History

Seattle supermarket executive Monte L. Bean (1899-1982) took over Eba Mutual Grocery Stores in 1939, and transformed the failing chain into a profitable and expanding one. By the mid-1950s, Bean sought to rebrand his chain, and devised the name "Tradewell" to represent his new modern approach to grocery sales. For Tradewell's first ultramodern outlet, Bean commissioned architect Welton D. Becket, Sr., (1902-1969), a Seattle native, to design the first store. Becket had attended the University of Washington, graduating in 1927, and worked for a few years in the area before relocating to Southern CA in 1933, at the depths of the Depression. Working with Charles Plummer and UW classmate Walter Wurdeman, Becket became a partner in Plummer, Wurdeman and Becket Architects, which became well-known following its renowned design for the Pan-Pacific Auditorium (1934). Plummer and Wurdeman passed away prematurely, the former in 1939 and the later in 1949. After Wurdeman's death, Becket renamed his firm "Welton D. Becket and Associates," playing a leading role in Los Angeles's post-war expansion, and becoming one of the largest architectural firms in the US.

Building Notes

Welton Becket and Associates' design for this new Tradewell Supermarket won a National Merit Award from the American Institute of Architectcs in 1959.

PCAD id: 22448