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Summary for 2614 24th AVE / Parcel ID 6681500250 / Inv # DPR006

Historic Name: Bayview Playfield Shelter House Common Name:
Style: Modern Neighborhood: Magnolia
Built By: Year Built: 1957
This modern shelter house was constructed in 1957 to provide a permanent replacement for the park’s portable toilets. The city had originally acquired the property for the park in 1914 with funds provided by a bond issue approved by voters in 1912. At the time, there were few city services or facilities in Magnolia, which hindered real estate development. Although the city annexed the Magnolia peninsula in 1891, there was little residential or commercial development until the 1920s and 1930s primarily due to its topography and geographical isolation. However, most of Magnolia’s housing stock dates to the period between 1930 and 1960. The Magnolia peninsula is made up of two hills separated by a valley, once known as Paradise Valley. In 1857, Naval Geographer George Davidson had named the southwest corner of the peninsula Magnolia Bluff after mistaking the extensive groves of madrona trees for magnolias. In the 1850s, the first land claims were staked in the Interbay area between Magnolia and Queen Anne with Salmon Bay on the north and Smith Cove of Elliott Bay on the south. By 1860, farming was beginning to spread up and over Magnolia with scattered settlements of farmhouses among the fields. In 1881, a lighthouse was established at West Point. Ten years later, the Great Northern Railroad was routed through the Interbay area, improving access to Magnolia. The railroad also built extensive facilities at Interbay, including the longest pier on the West Coast. In 1895, the City of Seattle donated land in the northwest corner of the peninsula to the Department of War for the creation of Camp Lewis, which was largely developed between 1898 and 1908. In 1900, the army garrison was renamed Fort Lawton to honor Major General H.W. Lawton killed in the Spanish-American War the previous year. Soon the area became known as the Lawton Peninsula, especially after the 1905 establishment of a streetcar line to Fort Lawton from Interbay via the northern end of the peninsula. Despite these developments, most of Magnolia retained its character as a rural community of dairy and chicken farms at a time when the rest of the city was experiencing rapid urban growth. It was not until access improved in the 1910s and 1920s that residential and commercial development began on a larger scale. The pace of development accelerated after the construction of the Magnolia Bridge in 1930. Improvements to the park, originally named "Interbay Playground," began as soon as the acquisition was complete. By 1916, these included grading and a water system, an athletic field, fencing and planting. A children’s play area was added in 1930. By the later 1950s, increased use of the field demanded a permanent comfort station. Designed by Parks Department architect Donald N. Sherwood, this shelter house was completed in 1957. During his career with the Parks Department, Sherwood designed a total of fourteen buildings. Beginning in the later 1920s, the Parks Department had constructed brick shelter houses at many of the city’s playgrounds and playfields. These buildings housed large rooms for organized recreation activities in addition to public restroom facilities. Office space for recreation instructors was also provided. The Parks Department continued to construct new shelter houses into the later 1930s due to the availability of labor and funding from state and federal relief programs, such as the Works Progress Administration (WPA). However, shortages of labor and materials brought on by the Second World War halted construction of any new park buildings for most of the 1940s. Construction of new shelter houses commenced in the late 1940s and continued into the 1960s. However, the materials eventually changed from brick to the less expensive and more durable concrete block, and the modern design of the 1950s shelter houses contrasted with the earlier buildings, which generally exhibited Craftsman or period revival stylistic features. In order to avoid confusion with a new Interbay Playground, the name of this park was changed to Bayview Playground in 1957. This building is significant for its design and for its association with the development of Bayview Playfield.
Completed in 1957, this concrete block shelter house occupies a site near the sidewalk along the western side of Bayview Playfield. The one-story structure has a T-shaped footprint and an overhanging shed roof with three skylights. The roof rests on three beams, which extend the length of the building and overhang the north and south side elevations. Two beams line the tops of the front and rear walls, while the center beam rests on the end walls. The Modern building faces east towards the ballfields and contains a recreation room at the center between a women’s restroom at the southern end and a men’s restroom at the northern end. At either end of the principal east elevation, the original single entrance doors to the restrooms are situated below louvered transoms on the rear walls of the recessed corners. A single door entrance to the recreation room is located at the center of the east elevation below a louvered transom. Long narrow louvered openings line the western half of the north and south end walls below the roofline. The rear west elevation presents a blank concrete wall with the exception of three small metal vents at the base of the wall on each end. Graffiti mars the building, which exhibits a deterioration of the wood in the louvered openings. However, this modest building still retains good physical integrity.

Detail for 2614 24th AVE / Parcel ID 6681500250 / Inv # DPR006

Status: Yes - Inventory
Classication: Building District Status:
Cladding(s): Concrete - Block Foundation(s): Concrete - Poured
Roof Type(s): Shed Roof Material(s): Other
Building Type: Other Plan: T-Shape
Structural System: Concrete - Block No. of Stories: one
Unit Theme(s): Architecture/Landscape Architecture, Community Planning/Development, Entertainment/Recreation
Changes to Plan: Intact
Changes to Windows: Intact
Changes to Original Cladding: Intact
Major Bibliographic References
Sherwood, Don. Seattle Parks Histories, c. 1970-1981, unpublished.

Photo collection for 2614 24th AVE / Parcel ID 6681500250 / Inv # DPR006

Photo taken Oct 31, 2000
App v2.0.1.0