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Summary for 4757 CALIFORNIA AVE / Parcel ID 149530-0115 / Inv # 0

Historic Name: Seattle-First National Bank Common Name: Technical Analysis, Inc.
Style: Modern - Curtain Wall Neighborhood: West Seattle Junction
Built By: Year Built: 1961
 
Significance
In the opinion of the survey, this property appears to meet the criteria of the Seattle Landmarks Preservation Ordinance.
This building was designed in 1961 as a branch of the Seattle First National Bank by Paul Thiry (1904-1993), one of Washington’s most noted architects of the period. The building reflects the Modernist approach to bank design, with large expanses of glass and concrete and accommodations for the automobile. It dates from the era when the bank was building its new downtown headquarters, one of the city's first true skyscrapers, which opened in 1969. Although the lower level has been altered, it remains a notable example of a Modernist bank. 

Thiry's early work consisted of Tudor and Colonial Revival houses, but after traveling abroad in the 1930s he pioneered the use of the new International Style for private homes. After World War II his practice expanded to include museums, churches, libraries and schools. Thiry was the master planner for Century 21, the Seattle World’s Fair, overseeing design and construction of the fair’s buildings.  Thiry was particularly interested in experimental concrete technology, which is evident in this building. It is shown dramatically in the Seattle Center Coliseum (now KeyArena). Other extant Thiry works are the Northeast Branch of the Seattle Public Library (1954), Cedar Park Elementary School (1958), the Washington State Library (1954-59) in Olympia and St. Demetrios Greek Orthodox Church (1964-68).


 

 

 
Appearance

This distinctive building sits on a sloping corner lot with parking to the north and rear. It is of reinforced concrete construction with a flat roof with wide overhangs. Most of the building has expansive windows with aluminum sash, with colored aluminum panels below the windows. The entry is on the east façade, approached by a wide concrete ramp. This wall is mostly glass, sheltered by a very wide roof overhang. The north façade, facing a parking lot, has large glass windows on the east half, with concrete screens at ground level for ventilation; the rear half is concrete with smaller windows placed high on the wall.  On the west façade, facing the parking lot, the upper level is entirely glass, while the lower level is concrete with no openings. On the south façade, facing the street, the eastern half is concrete with no openings; the west half has large windows with concrete below.

Detail for 4757 CALIFORNIA AVE / Parcel ID 149530-0115 / Inv # 0

Status: Yes - Inventory
Classication: Building District Status:
Cladding(s): Concrete Foundation(s): Concrete - Poured
Roof Type(s): Flat with Eaves, Shed Roof Material(s): Asphalt/Composition, Metal
Building Type: Commercial/Trade - Financial Institution Plan: Rectangular
Structural System: Concrete - Poured No. of Stories: one
Unit Theme(s): Architecture/Landscape Architecture, Commerce
Integrity
Changes to Plan: Slight
Changes to Windows: Intact
Changes to Original Cladding: Intact
Major Bibliographic References
West Seattle Herald. West Side Story, 1987.
Polk's Seattle Directories, 1890-1996.
King County Assessor Property Characteristics Report, database at http://www5.metrokc.gov/ --parcel locator

Photo collection for 4757 CALIFORNIA AVE / Parcel ID 149530-0115 / Inv # 0


Photo taken Apr 26, 2015
App v2.0.1.0