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Summary for 4528 CALIFORNIA AVE / Parcel ID 095200-6315 / Inv # 0

Historic Name: Marier Foto Studio Common Name: Menashe Jewlery/Fleurt
Style: Commercial Neighborhood: West Seattle Junction
Built By: Year Built: 1928

This building, an important part of the streetscape since 1928, has housed Menashe Jewelers since 1973, and other jewelers previously. It has also had a number of shoe repair shops, barbers, clothing stores and other small businesses.  Although the building retains its terra cotta embellishment and much of its original character, one storefront has been significantly altered.  The building was designed in 1929 by Victor W. Voorhees, who also designed the nearby J. C. Penney department store. Voorhees is credited with more than 100 building projects between 1904 and 1929, ranging from cottages and large residences to apartment blocks, auto dealerships, industrial buildings, fraternal halls, office buildings and hotels.  He was also known for publishing a popular book of house and bungalow plans in 1907.

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.




This one-story brick masonry building is clad with brick in shades of brown and tan. The bays are separated by pilasters clad with cream-colored terra cotta with a shield design. There is a course of terra cotta above the transom windows and another on the cornice. The storefronts have been updated with newer doors and window sash; the black tile bulkheads remain. The area above the windows, below the fabric canopy, is stucco clad. The large transom windows are now opaque black glass with aluminum sash. The southernmost storefront has been altered with a wood door, wood cladding above the window and a wood planter.

Detail for 4528 CALIFORNIA AVE / Parcel ID 095200-6315 / Inv # 0

Status: No - Altered
Classication: Building District Status:
Cladding(s): Brick, Ceramic tile, Stucco Foundation(s): Concrete - Poured
Roof Type(s): Flat with Parapet Roof Material(s): Asphalt/Composition
Building Type: Commercial/Trade - Specialty store Plan: Rectangular
Structural System: Masonry - Unreinforced No. of Stories: one
Unit Theme(s): Architecture/Landscape Architecture, Commerce
Changes to Plan: Intact
Changes to Original Cladding: Slight
Storefront: Moderate
Major Bibliographic References
West Seattle Herald. West Side Story, 1987.
Polk's Seattle Directories, 1890-1996.
King County Tax Assessor Records, ca. 1932-1972.

Photo collection for 4528 CALIFORNIA AVE / Parcel ID 095200-6315 / Inv # 0

Photo taken Mar 03, 2016

Photo taken Mar 31, 2015
App v2.0.1.0