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Summary for 4517 CALIFORNIA AVE / Parcel ID 338990-0035 / Inv # 0

Historic Name: Peterson Investment Corporation Common Name: Jan's Beauty Supply
Style: Commercial Neighborhood: West Seattle Junction
Built By: Year Built: 1927
 
Significance

This building, constructed in 1927, is associated with early development of the West Seattle Junction business district. This two-story building, from 1927, has accommodated numerous small businesses over the years. In the 1930s-1960s, it housed the offices of the Peterson Investment Company and insurance agents, as well as a dental clinic and retail tenants such as Preservative Paints and a florist. The façade was modernized in 1847 and 1969 with new materials and windows.

The Junction, West Seattle's primary commercial district, acquired its name in 1907 when a new street car line on California Avenue SW was extended south to Fauntleroy Park, crossing the Admiral streetcar line at SW Alaska Street. West Seattle, incorporated as a city in 1902, had built the Admiral line--the nation’s first municipally-owned streetcar line. At first, the Junction was just a swamp with a few real estate offices, but in 1907 West Seattle voted to be annexed to Seattle. Enhanced transportation and new amenities, accompanied by heavy promotion, encouraged a real estate boom, with new residents rapidly buying lots and building homes. Jefferson School opened in 1912, and had to be expanded in 1917. The 1920s brought significant growth, with major stores such as Ernst Hardware, Bartell Drugs, a J. C. Penney department store and two "five and dimes"--Woolworth's and Kress. Although development slowed during the Depression, the proximity of defense industries brought many new residents during World War II.  The Junction thrived into the 1950s with several modern retail buildings and larger stores. By the 1980s, however, competition from shopping malls made the Junction's stores less competitive. J.C. Penney left in 1987 and many other retailers selling common items such as clothing closed, generally replaced by restaurants, bars and service businesses. In 1985, a large retail/office/residential project was built on the former site of Jefferson Elementary School. In the early 1990s, the City of Seattle adopted a comprehensive plan that focused growth in "urban villages," including the Junction. By 2010, numerous single-story buildings were being replaced by six-story mixed-use structures with underground parking, significantly changing the district’s character.

 

 

 

 

 
Appearance
This two-story brick masonry building retains its stepped parapet three-bay configuration but has new metal-sash windows and stucco cladding. The main façade has recessed storefronts with new doors and large windows. The second floor has three groups of new windows. The rear has a recessed entry and a small loading dock with aluminum sliders on the second story. Cladding is stucco on the front with clapboard and vertical boards on the rear.

 

Detail for 4517 CALIFORNIA AVE / Parcel ID 338990-0035 / Inv # 0

Status: No - Altered
Classication: Building District Status:
Cladding(s): Brick, Stucco, Vertical - Boards Foundation(s): Concrete - Poured
Roof Type(s): Flat Roof Material(s): Unknown
Building Type: Commercial/Trade - Business Plan: Rectangular
Structural System: Masonry - Unreinforced No. of Stories: two
Unit Theme(s): Architecture/Landscape Architecture, Commerce
Integrity
Changes to Plan: Intact
Changes to Windows: Moderate
Changes to Original Cladding: Extensive
Storefront: Extensive
Major Bibliographic References
West Seattle Herald. West Side Story, 1987.
King County Property Record Card (c. 1938-1972), Washington State Archives.
Polk's Seattle Directories, 1910-1948.

Photo collection for 4517 CALIFORNIA AVE / Parcel ID 338990-0035 / Inv # 0


Photo taken Mar 31, 2015
App v2.0.1.0