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Summary for 3540 Wallingford AVE / Parcel ID 4083306420 / Inv # WA007

Historic Name: Edgewater Grocery Common Name: none
Style: Commercial Neighborhood: Wallingford
Built By: Year Built: 1913
 
Significance
This is an excellent and early example of a corner store, still remaining in the Wallingford neighborhood. Wallingford is one of Seattle's "streetcar suburbs," which developed along the street car lines established in the first two decades of the 20th Century. These neighborhoods typically consisted of a linear commercial district surrounded by blocks of single-family homes. Small grocery stores developed along the streetcar routes, allowing people to pick up groceries on their way home, or to walk to a nearby store rather than going a longer distance to the commercial district. Wallingford Avenue North was a major streetcar route. This is an example of a building built as a corner store, rather than being a converted single-family home. It has room for the shop owner to live upstairs, which was a typical configuration at this early time; later stores were single purpose, without living quarters. After World War II people increasingly relied on automobiles rather than streetcars, and drove to larger stores. This trend eliminated most of the corner stores. Most of the structures have been converted to or replaced by housing, as current zoning does not encourage commercial uses in residential areas.
 
Appearance
This two-story vernacular building has a side gable roof with two gabled dormers on the north side and a flat roof to the south. The clapboard siding, in alternating wide and narrow bands, appears to be original or similar to the original; it is badly in need of paint. The storefront has a distinctive recessed corner entry with decorative wood trim. The doorway is flanked by wood-frame transomed display windows in a three-over-two configuration. The other display windows are covered with wood siding. The second floor windows have been replaced by aluminum sash. An unusual feature is a covered wooden bench attached to the building's west elevation near the entry. It appears to have been added between 1937 and 1956. It may have served those waiting for the bus, or have been simply for customers to socialize. The entry to the apartments is toward the rear of the north elevation. There was originally a square bay above the entry on the west elevation; this has been removed. Immediately adjacent to this building, on the same lot, is a small, flat-roofed building that was originally a separate store. The building remains, but the fa├žade has been largely covered with wood.

Detail for 3540 Wallingford AVE / Parcel ID 4083306420 / Inv # WA007

Status: Yes - Inventory
Classication: Building District Status:
Cladding(s): Wood - Clapboard Foundation(s): Concrete - Poured
Roof Type(s): Flat, Gable Roof Material(s): Asphalt/Composition
Building Type: Domestic - Multiple Family Plan: Rectangular
Structural System: Balloon Frame/Platform Frame No. of Stories: two
Unit Theme(s): Commerce, Community Planning/Development
Integrity
Changes to Plan: Slight
Changes to Windows: Slight
Changes to Original Cladding: Intact
Major Bibliographic References
Berlow, Alexa, Enduring Elements of Neighborhood Urban Form: The Case of the Corner Store in Wallingford, Seattle, M.U.P. thesis, University of Washington ,1994.
King County Property Record Card (c. 1938-1972), Washington State Archives.
Polk's Seattle Directories, 1890-1996.

Photo collection for 3540 Wallingford AVE / Parcel ID 4083306420 / Inv # WA007


Photo taken Sep 19, 2001
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