AKA: Seattle Public Schools, University Heights Community Center, University District, Seattle, WA

Structure Type: built works - public buildings - schools - elementary schools

Designers: Bebb and Mendel, Architects (firm); Makers, Architecture and Urban Design (firm); Stephen, James, Architect (firm); Charles Herbert Bebb ; Louis Leonard Mendel Sr. (architect); James Stephen (architect)

Dates: constructed 1902

2 stories

5031 University Way
Seattle, WA 98105-4341

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The Seattle architectural duo of Bebb and Mendel produced the design for the University Heights Elementary School. Due to its rapid growth during the 1900-1910 decade, the city undertook a massive school-building campaign, most designed by the Seattle Public School District's Supervising Architect between 1902 and 1910, James Stephens (1858-1938). University Heights closed as a public school in 1989, and now serves as a community center. During the 1990s and 2000s, reflecting the "slow food" movement of the time, farmer's markets opened around Seattle. In 05/1993, the University Heights Farmer's Market began operation on the school's southern playground/parking lot. In 2013, the market's popularity enabled it to spill onto University Way NE, requiring the temporary closure of the street each Saturday morning.

Bebb and Mendel gave the two-floor, wood-frame building a three-bay front facade. The central bay projected slightly from the sides. A compound hipped roof covered the school, with curving parapets marking the roof line of both end bays. This curving parapet suggested the influence of the Mission Revival Style, then very popular in CA. Unlike CA, however, this Seattle variant was not covered in stucco, but sided in the most prevalent local building material, wood.

A renovation was made in 1907-1908 by architect, James Stephen; renovated later into a City of Seattle Community Center; the Seattle Public School Administration considered selling this property along with seven others in 2007. Renovations were made to University Heights Elementary in 08-09/2012; the exterior was painted at this time.

PCAD id: 3266