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Summary for 8537-8539 Greenwood AVE / Parcel ID 9231800030 / Inv # GR011

Historic Name: Davis Building Common Name: Davis Building
Style: Commercial Neighborhood: Greenwood/Phinney
Built By: Year Built: 1926
This building is an interesting example of changing building form as a commercial district develops over time. The original two-story brick apartment building, built in 1926, was set back from the sidewalk, leaving room for a one-story commercial addition. The addition was built sometime between 1926 and 1937. However, it was clad in clapboard siding at that time. About 1956 it was clad in red brick to match the older section of the building. The building has housed a variety of activities over the years, including Purdy's Tavern (1938), Cooke's Apparel (953), the El Toro Tavern (1956), and a manufacturing plant for Maries' Blue Cheese dressing (1964). It is currently an interior design shop. The original building was part of the 1920'd development at this historically important intersection. Until the 1950s, 85th Street was Seattle's northern city limits and the end of the streetcar line. Greenwood Avenue was a major arterial, providing access to residences and businesses in North King County and connecting to Snohomish County development. It was here that people living to the north would disembark, either to walk to their homes or to transfer to the interurban line a few blocks away. Accordingly, during the 1920s, the intersection was marked with several substantial buildings. This building was outside the city limits when it was built, with fewer building restrictions and no permit requirements.
This structure has two connected sections: a two-story apartment section toward the rear and a one-story storefront at the front. Both are clad in red brick. The larger section has an arched parapet with the word "Davis" on a cast stone tablet. The three storefronts retain their original configuration, with recessed wood doors and wood sash. The middle storefront has a distinctive rounded display area with metal window frames. The upper floor has original divided light sash.

Detail for 8537-8539 Greenwood AVE / Parcel ID 9231800030 / Inv # GR011

Status: Yes - Inventory
Classication: Building District Status:
Cladding(s): Brick Foundation(s): Concrete - Poured
Roof Type(s): Gable Roof Material(s): Unknown
Building Type: Domestic - Multiple Family Plan: Rectangular
Structural System: Balloon Frame/Platform Frame No. of Stories: one & ½
Unit Theme(s): Commerce
Changes to Plan: Slight
Changes to Windows: Intact
Changes to Original Cladding: Intact
Major Bibliographic References
History Link
King County Property Record Card (c. 1938-1972), Washington State Archives.
Polk's Seattle Directories, 1890-1996.

Photo collection for 8537-8539 Greenwood AVE / Parcel ID 9231800030 / Inv # GR011

Photo taken Mar 20, 2002
App v2.0.1.0