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Summary for 423 Fairview AVE / Parcel ID 1983200610 / Inv #

Historic Name: Granville Company/ Warehouse for A. C. Goerig Common Name: Wold Building
Style: Beaux Arts - Neoclassical, Commercial Neighborhood: South Lake Union
Built By: Year Built: 1924
In the opinion of the survey, this property is located in a potential historic districe (National and/or local).
Now called the Wold Building after its present owner, this building shows the influence of Beaux Arts design in its symmetrical design and ornamentation. Despite changes to the glazing, it retains its original appearance and is a significant building within the South Lake Union neighborhood. It was completed in 1924, according to original drawings, as a “warehouse for A. C. Goerig,” and initially housed the Granville Company. The architect was V. W. Voorhees and there are obvious similarities between this building and the Troy Laundry Building, which was also designed by Voorhees and first completed in 1927. Victor Voorhees was a prolific Seattle architect from around 1907 to the late 1920s. His career in Seattle began in 1904, when he moved from the Midwest to work in the building department of the Chicago, Milwaukee and St. Paul Railway Line. From 1907 to 1911, through the publication of his Western Builder, which featured a series of his house plans, he was responsible for the construction of many houses in Seattle. These house designs, although varied, have recognizable features and detailing. Extant examples can be found in many parts of Seattle, but in particular on Queen Anne Hill and Capitol Hill. He is best known for high end buildings, however. These include the Vance Building (1929-30) at Third and Union St, the Vance Hotel (1927) at 6th and Stewart St, the Lloyd Building on Stewart Street between 7th and 8th Avenues, all in downtown Seattle; the Georgetown City Hall; the Marqueen on Queen Anne Avenue North and Mercer Street and the Washington Arms apartment building, south of Volunteer Park, on Capitol Hill. On a King County property record card from 1934, a diagram of the plan of this building shows that, while a portion of it had smaller rooms, the bulk of the building was devoted to a large workshop space. Notes also describe it as a “factory.” There are also notes on the same card that describe the building as being “occupied by W. P. A. project.” By 1937, the building was owned by the Rossoe Manufacturing Company, who, according to architectural drawings from 1946, also made interior changes and added skylights. While no architect is listed for these changes, the consulting engineer was Sigmund Ivarsson. The building was also remodeled, probably mainly on the interior, in 1955. The Rossoe Manufacturing Company or some member of the Rossoe family appears to have owned the building until 1969, when James Saldin purchased it. In 1983, it was sold to the present owner.
This building has a rectangular plan, with a footprint of 160 feet by 120 feet. It is sited mid-block between Republican and Harrison Streets, along the west side of Fairview Avenue North. It has a full basement and two floors above ground. The roof is mainly flat, although it probably includes skylights added in 1947, and is surrounded by parapet, which is raised in certain areas along the main façade. Exterior walls are of concrete, with red brick veneer and cast stone trim on the main façade. The major, east façade is the only elevation visible from the street and located on the west side of Fairview Avenue. The facade has a symmetrical composition, centered around a narrow entry bay with a raised parapet in a gable shape. The façade is visually divided by engaged pilasters into three wider bays, with a narrow terminal bay to each side of the central entry bay. Pilasters have simple cast concrete bases, brick shafts and contrasting cast-stone capitals which feature a central rectangular face, decorated at the center with an anthemion motif flanked by other floral motifs. Above the capitals, is a long, cast stone entablature, which runs the length of the façade. The parapet shape rises and falls above the main façade, emphasizing key elements and also serving to pull together bays into smaller groupings within the long façade. It steps down over the bays that flank the entry bay, but is still slightly raised and steps down again at the end of these two bays. It only rises again at the ends of the façade over the narrow terminating bays, and remains at this level along the north and south elevations, which are partially visible. Also emphasizing the central gable is a polygon shape, which mimics the gabled parapet shape above the entablature in header bricks. The ornamental brick shape is punctuated at four corners by square, cast–stone ornaments. Lower down on the central façade and of note, are the brackets, with acanthus leaf and other floral ornamentation, located to each side of the central doorway. In terms of the entire façade, the size and number of windows within the bays, mostly consistent with the original design of the building, also reinforce its proportioning and rhythm. While the central bay consists of a doorway topped at the second floor by a single window, the two succeeding bays to each side of the entry have pairs of rectangular windows at the top level, set over corresponding first floor double or single openings, often consisting of a primary glazed area and two smaller panes below. The third bay to each side of the centerline, is narrower, with fewer or narrower openings. In fact, all the windows have been replaced. Based on a 1930s photograph, the original fenestration consisted of multi-pane, metal sash on the second level and storefront windows with clerestories, divided into two long rectangular lites. While the present windows are not original, the window openings remain the same. In general, the cladding, including the parapet shape and the detailing of the pilasters, is intact.

Detail for 423 Fairview AVE / Parcel ID 1983200610 / Inv #

Status: Yes - Inventory
Classication: Building District Status: INV
Cladding(s): Brick, Stone - Cast Foundation(s): Concrete - Poured
Roof Type(s): Flat with Parapet Roof Material(s): Asphalt/Composition
Building Type: Commercial/Trade - Warehouse Plan: Rectangular
Structural System: Concrete - Poured No. of Stories: one
Unit Theme(s): Architecture/Landscape Architecture, Manufacturing/Industry
Changes to Original Cladding: Intact
Changes to Windows: Moderate
Changes to Plan: Intact
Storefront: Moderate
Major Bibliographic References
King County Property Record Card (c. 1938-1972), Washington State Archives.
Drawings, Microfiche Files, Department of Planning and Development.
Tobin, Carol et al?, “Map Key for Commons Historical Properties,” unpublished list, 26 June 1994.
Tobin, Caroline and Hart Crowser, “Historical and Cultural Resources,”Seattle Commons, South Lake Union Plan, Final Environmental Impact Statement, Appendix 15, Seattle: City of Seattle Office of Management and Planning, 1995.

Photo collection for 423 Fairview AVE / Parcel ID 1983200610 / Inv #

Photo taken Mar 14, 2005

Photo taken Mar 14, 2005

Photo taken Jun 04, 2005
App v2.0.1.0