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Summary for 5431 32nd AVE / Parcel ID 1176001245 / Inv # FAC009

Historic Name: Jerry Dean Court Apartments Common Name: Northwest Senior Center
Style: Commercial, Modern, Modern - International Style Neighborhood: Crown Hill/Ballard
Built By: Year Built: 1949
In the opinion of the survey, this property appears to meet the criteria of the National Register of Historic Places.
Mrs. Agnes Morkrid Blomskog constructed this building in 1949 as a store and apartment building on the site of a 1924 service station. At the time, it was primarily a residential neighborhood of single-family homes. Designed by architect Jesse Warren, the building contained three stores on the ground level facing NW 32nd Avenue and six apartments on the second story with a NW Market Street entrance. By 1951, a grocery and meat market, a variety store, and a pharmacy occupied the three storefronts. The apartments may not have been completed initially as there are no listings for them in the 1951 directory. By 1953, Agnes Blomskog and her husband, George, are listed as the residents of Apartment 1 in the Jerry Dean Court Apartments on the upper story of the building. Before the building’s construction, George Blomskog owned a small grocery store a few blocks to the west on Market. He later worked as a clerk at a Safeway Store. This modest commercial vernacular building exhibits elements of the International Style, including a flat roof without a cornice, no exterior ornamentation, and bands of metal casement windows and glazed corners, which are set flush to the walls. This building was operated as a store and apartment building for just over twenty years before the City of Seattle acquired it in fall of 1972 for use as the Northwest Senior Center. The city acquired and converted the building for use as a senior center with funding from the Seattle Model City program. The Seattle Model City Program was funded primarily through the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development under authority of the federal Demonstration Cities and Metropolitan Development Act of 1966. The City’s Executive Department administered the program, whose goals and objectives were to reduce social and economic disadvantages in designated neighborhoods, provide maximum training and employment opportunities, and establish health services for residents. On August 19, 1968, the Seattle Model City Program outlined its master plan for the Central District. Four years later, the Planned Variations Expansion allowed extension of the program to three other disadvantaged neighborhoods until Model City funding ended in 1974. Currently, the Northwest Senior Center is one of three facilities owned by the city but operated by Senior Services of Seattle/King County, a non-profit agency serving seniors in the Seattle/King County area since 1967. The other two facilities, the Central Area Senior Center and the Greenwood Senior Center, are also located in buildings acquired by the city during the 1970s for the same purpose. The city leased this building to Senior Services to operate the senior center within two years of its acquisition and renovation. This building is significant for its associations with the development of the Ballard neighborhood, with the Seattle Model City program, and with the provision of services to the city’s senior citizens.
Completed in 1950, this two story brick store and apartment building occupies a corner lot on 32nd Avenue South at NW Market Street. Set into a slope, the rectangular plan structure measures 70 feet by 60 feet. Although modest in appearance, this building displays design details of the International Style, including a flat roof without a cornice, no exterior ornamentation, and bands of metal casement windows and glazed corners, which are set flush to the walls. All elevations but the south are clad with a brick veneer. The south elevation is made of painted concrete block. The principal east elevation displays a two-part facade composition with storefronts at the ground floor level below apartment units above. The parapet steps up at the center of this elevation and around the corners. A wide wood marquee extends the length of the facade and covers the storefront level. The intact storefronts have plate glass windows above brick bulkheads. The larger storefront at the southern end has double entrance doors in a glass-enclosed porch while the smaller storefront at the center has a single enclosed entrance door. The entrance door of the storefront at the northern end has not been enclosed. The upper story has alternating larger and smaller openings set with bands of fixed and casement windows, including openings, which wrap the northeast and southeast corners. The north elevation has an entrance to the upper floor apartments located west of center. A flared copper hip roof covers a wide door flanked by sidelights and topped by a transom. A short flight of concrete stairs with a brick stoop provides access to this entrance. A large chimney is situated at the eastern end of the elevation. Four window openings line the elevation, and a fifth wraps the northwest corner. These openings contain the same windows present on the east elevation. A wooden wheelchair accessible ramp extends along the west elevation and terminates at an entrance at the southern end covered by a flat roof porch. Four window openings also line this elevation, and a fifth wraps the southwest corner. The upper floor of the south elevation has three window openings above two entrance doors at the ground floor level, which open onto a small parking area. One entrance is situated within a small shed roof porch enclosed with glass. This modest but attractive building retains excellent physical integrity.

Detail for 5431 32nd AVE / Parcel ID 1176001245 / Inv # FAC009

Status: Yes - Inventory
Classication: Building District Status:
Cladding(s): Brick, Concrete Foundation(s): Concrete - Poured
Roof Type(s): Flat Roof Material(s): Unknown
Building Type: Commercial/Trade - Business Plan: Rectangular
Structural System: Unknown No. of Stories: two
Unit Theme(s): Architecture/Landscape Architecture, Commerce, Ethnic Heritage
Changes to Plan: Slight
Changes to Original Cladding: Intact
Changes to Windows: Intact
Major Bibliographic References
City of Seattle DCLU Microfilm Records.
King County Property Record Card (c. 1938-1972), Washington State Archives.
Polk's Seattle Directories, 1890-1996.
City Council Bills and Ordinances, Seattle City Clerk's Office Legislative Databases (
"George R. Blomskog," Obituaries, The Seattle Times, April 19, 1960, p. 30.

Photo collection for 5431 32nd AVE / Parcel ID 1176001245 / Inv # FAC009

Photo taken Nov 01, 2000
App v2.0.1.0