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Summary for 2000 6th AVE / Parcel ID 0659000775 / Inv #

Historic Name: Doric Sixth Avenue Motor Hotel Common Name: Sixth Avenue Inn
Style: None Neighborhood: Downtown Urban Center
Built By: Year Built: 1958
This property is directly associated with a crucial period (1950-1966) during which downtown commercial redevelopment began to occur after nearly thirty years of stagnation as several major modern municipal government and commercial buildings were constructed. However, compared with massive post-war suburban real estate development, relatively few new buildings were constructed in downtown Seattle until the late 1950s. Major modern construction included the Public Safety Building (1951, destroyed), Seattle Public Library (1956-59, destroyed) and the Municipal Building (1959-61, destroyed), as well as the expansions of the two major downtown department stores. Scattered major commercial construction included several notable extant buildings that reflect modern zoning changes and architectural trends including: the Norton Building (1958); the Logan Building (1959); the Washington Building (1960) and the IBM Building (1961-64). The Seattle World’s Fair - Century 21 Exposition was held in 1962 and triggered the remodeling of older buildings and the construction of the monorail, and tourist-oriented restaurants and motels. Throughout this era older buildings were demolished to make way for surface parking lots and garages and for interstate freeway construction. The Doric Sixth Avenue Motor Hotel was built in 1958 for a motel-hotel chain development entity, the Doric Motel Company. The architect for the Doric Sixth Avenue Motor Hotel was the Bellevue based firm of Lindahl and Bacon; however, limited biographical information has been gathered about this firm and its partners and virtually nothing is known about their career in Seattle or elsewhere. The motel building replaced a used car dealership, a parking lot and a gas station that formerly occupied the site. The Doric Motel Company was a hostelry chain that was one of the multiple subsidiaries of the parent company, the Doric Company. The Doric Company was founded by Floyd R. Clodfelter in the post-war period after he had risen to local financial prominence. The Doric Motel Co. developed many other motels in the area including the Towne Motel(s) in Seattle, the Tacoma Doric, and the Portland Doric as well as motels in California. Other subsidiaries of the Doric Company held contracts to operate hotels in Seattle and elsewhere including the prominent Mayflower Hotel. In 1963, after several years of financial hardship, the Doric chain of 20 hotels was sold for $20 million to the Gene Autry Hotel Company. That corporation with its general offices in Los Angeles was headed by Gene Autry, who after making his name as a movie star and singer went on to control a diversified business empire. Included in that sale were several other Seattle hotels, including: the New Washington; the Mayflower Hotel; the Waldorf Hotels, as well as the Doric Sixth Avenue Motor Hotel. This building is an altered example of an unusual downtown property type, motel building. However, numerous motels from this era are located in the Denny Regrade and nearer to the Seattle World’s Fair - Century 21 Exposition site (Seattle Center). This is a modest and altered example of post-war modern architectural design.
Located on a sloping site on the east side of an entire half city block between Virginia and Lenora Streets, this four-story building was designed and constructed to serve as a 170-room motel, purposes for which it continues to be used. It exhibits a long low horizontal form that measures 52’ x 300’ and is set back from the adjacent streets and alley to allow for large asphalt parking areas both under and around the building. Due to the sloped site, there is a ground floor level at the center of the structure (measuring roughly 58’ x 52’) that houses the motel lobby, manager’s office and elevator core. Open covered parking areas are located to the north and south of this space under the main motel room wings. A covered automobile drive-through is situated to the west side of the lobby entrance, above which is a restaurant and lounge space at the center of the first floor level. Guest rooms are located to each end of this floor level. The upper tow floor levels are entirely devoted to guest rooms. The reinforced concrete block (CMU) structure includes a concrete foundation and exhibits a gray painted concrete finish. The ground floor level (with the exception of the lobby/service core) is open at both the north and south ends and interspersed with rectangular concrete block structural columns and stair towers at each end. The west and east elevations are divided into 24 uniform bays with narrow inaccessible balconies at each guestroom. The north and south elevations are flush concrete walls with a projecting central stair tower at each elevation. The building exhibits minimal ornamentation or architectural details with slotted window openings in the towers, projecting concrete floor plates at the north and south corners and simple concrete and metal pipe guardrails at each balcony. Original aluminum window/door walls appear to remain in place at each unit. The current mansard type metal roof is not original; as constructed the building had a flat built-up roof and the major end and two central concrete structural walls projected above the roofline. The current restaurant facade, awning and entry walkway are also modern alterations; the original restaurant and pool (now removed) appear to have been covered by a parabolic concrete and steel roof form that is no longer in place or visible. There do not appear to be any intact or architecturally significant interior building features, finishes or public spaces.

Detail for 2000 6th AVE / Parcel ID 0659000775 / Inv #

Status: Yes - Inventory
Classication: Building District Status:
Cladding(s): Concrete, Concrete - Block Foundation(s):
Roof Type(s): Flat Roof Material(s): Unknown
Building Type: Domestic - Hotel Plan: Rectangular
Structural System: Concrete - Block No. of Stories: five
Unit Theme(s): Commerce
Changes to Original Cladding: Intact
Changes to Plan: Moderate
Changes to Windows: Intact
Major Bibliographic References
King County Property Record Card (c. 1938-1972), Washington State Archives.
City of Seattle DPD Microfilm Records.
'Doric Co. Fades in Reorganization" Seattle Times, July 22, 1964.

Photo collection for 2000 6th AVE / Parcel ID 0659000775 / Inv #

Photo taken May 25, 2006
App v2.0.1.0