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Summary for 2030 Westlake AVE / Parcel ID 0659000755 / Inv #

Historic Name: Loft Building for Mr. J. C. McHugh/ Craftsman Press Common Name: 2030 Westlake Avenue
Style: Commercial, Italian - Italian Renaissance Neighborhood: Denny Triangle
Built By: Year Built: 1925
In the opinion of the survey, this property appears to meet the criteria of the Seattle Landmarks Preservation Ordinance.
In the opinion of the survey, this property is located in a potential historic districe (National and/or local).
According to records of extant drawings, dated October 31, 1924, this significant building was designed as a “Loft Building for Mr. J. C. McHugh,” by architect O. F. Nelson. The builder was the Seattle Construction and Finance Company. As it appears today, the exterior of the building was completed in 1925, with only very minor changes subsequently. While the angled portion off of Westlake contained an office and “loading” space at the ground level, these drawings indicate that an elevator led to a second story, which included an apartment, arranged along the angled elevations. The living room was placed along the Westlake elevation, while the kitchen was set along the first three double-hung windows of the alley elevation and the bedroom along the two rear windows. By 1936, the building was occupied by Northwest Floor Covering. Architect Paul Thiry designed an interior balcony for this client. By 1944, when the building housed the Craftsman Press, architect Paul Hayden Kirk made interior changes to the building. These included a somewhat elaborate second story interior office behind the alley elevation off of Westlake. Notable features of the design were built-in bookshelves and drawers, a “davenport,” as well as a bar area and a skylight. Drawings indicate that the building was still occupied by the Craftsman Press in 1957, when architect Joseph L. Skoog made further interior changes. By 1969, the building was occupied by Northwest Mills and the interior was altered by architect Ken Ripley to allow for a “knitting machine shop” and a future expansion area for further knitting machines along the Westlake elevations. Interior changes were also made when the building was occupied by the “Yak Works” in the 1980s. By 1998, the building housed the Westlake Dance Center. Currently, the building appears to be occupied by a social service center. The design and detailing of the terra cotta clad elevations off of Westlake is especially masterful. These elevations are also reasonably intact. The 8th Avenue elevation, although simpler, has retained the most important and pleasing elements of its original design. A nomination for the building was presented to the City of Seattle Landmarks Board in 2004. Unfortunately, landmark status was denied on March 17, 2004.
This is a two story building, with a trapezoidal plan, wedged on an irregular site between 8th Avenue and Westlake Avenue. The building plan’s chamfered edge creates one of the facades of a striking terra cotta clad exterior, sited off of Westlake Avenue, while a somewhat simpler, but related concrete façade is sited on the west side of 8th Avenue. The intervening elevation between Westlake and 8th Avenue is a poured concrete wall, with no openings, and currently faces a small empty, triangular lot. The basic structure of the building is mainly concrete, with engaged, concrete columns, set inside the perimeter of exterior wall, which is covered by a terra cotta on two elevations off of Westlake; however, a back, exterior wall (north or northeast) was apparently constructed of hollow clay tile. The original interior structure consists of regularly spaced concrete, hexagonal columns. Off of Westlake, two major elevations are clad in terra cotta with a purple cast and matte finish. They present an eclectic mix of many elements derived from Late Medieval and Early Renaissance Italian architecture, as applied to Seattle commercial building. The shorter of the two elevations is parallel to Westlake Avenue; the longer one, set at an obtuse angle from the first, faces an alley across from the adjacent Westlake Hotel. The Westlake façade has one large opening, with storefront divided into three bays by thin columns. The central bay is larger than the two side bays and the entire main storefront is topped by multi-pane transom. The storefront opening also has a chamfered shape, emphasized by characteristic engaged bracket/ volute shapes, as well as by engaged columns, with floral capitals. The thin columns, which are engaged in the jambs of openings on both floors, have characteristic spiral shafts and are used throughout the two terra cotta clad elevations. The corresponding second floor fenestration of the Westlake facade is also characterized by the same tripartite division as seen in the storefront and by an overall chamfered shape; although here the central bay of fenestration is divided from the side bays by the characteristic ornamental columns. On the terra cotta clad, alley elevation facing southwest, there are two similar storefronts, topped by two recessed bays, each with three double-hung windows (each with a six over six arangement). The parapet of the two terra cotta clad elevations is emphasized by a continuous projecting cornice, consisting of an arched corbel table, topped by a continuous band of square shapes with carved floral motifs. The simple, Commercial Style, concrete clad 8th Avenue façade resembles many Seattle warehouse buildings, although there are, in fact, some similarities with the more ornate facades off of Westlake Avenue. The 8th Avenue facade is divided into three bays and has a projecting, metal cornice. Each of the second floor multi-pane windows, have multi-pane transoms. Each second story window bay has a tripartite division and a true chamfered shape, created by the wood window frames. At the ground level, each storefront also has the characteristic transom and overall chamfered shape. The south bay has a utilitarian, but somewhat complicated combination of front door and secondary transom, located at the south side of the storefront, in addition to a roll-up garage door. Based on original drawings, this is extremely close to the original design for this bay. The central bay has been changed somewhat and the entry door was designed to be located on the south side of the bay, whereas it is now placed at its center. All in all, however, based on drawings which date from 1925, the exterior façade detail on this elevation and particularly on the Westlake facades, is surprisingly intact.

Detail for 2030 Westlake AVE / Parcel ID 0659000755 / Inv #

Status: Yes - Inventory
Classication: Building District Status: INV
Cladding(s): Concrete, Terra cotta, Wood Foundation(s): Concrete - Poured
Roof Type(s): Flat with Parapet Roof Material(s): Asphalt/Composition
Building Type: Commercial/Trade - Warehouse Plan: Irregular
Structural System: No. of Stories:
Unit Theme(s): Architecture/Landscape Architecture, Commerce, Community Planning/Development
Storefront: Slight
Changes to Original Cladding: Intact
Changes to Windows: Intact
Changes to Plan: Intact
Major Bibliographic References
City of Seattle DCLU Microfilm Records.
King County Property Record Card (c. 1938-1972), Washington State Archives.
“Final Environmental Impact Statement for the New Federal Courthouse, Seattle, King County, Washington,” U.S. General Services Administration (Region 10), March 27, 1998, p 56-77.
Caroline Tobin, “2030 Westlake Avenue Building,” Landmark Nomination (to the City of Seattle Landmarks Preservation Board), February 20, 2004.

Photo collection for 2030 Westlake AVE / Parcel ID 0659000755 / Inv #

Photo taken Mar 20, 2006

Photo taken Mar 20, 2006

Photo taken Feb 15, 2006
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