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Summary for 200 1ST AVE / Parcel ID 1989201020 / Inv # 0

Historic Name: First West Building Common Name:
Style: Modern Neighborhood: Queen Anne
Built By: Year Built: 1971

This intact New Formalist commercial building was constructed in 1971 in the Uptown neighborhood and was originally known as the First West Building, owned by First West Building Co. According to the building construction permit (no. 536644), Seattle architecture firm Chester Lindsey Architects designed the structure, with Howard S. Wright serving as contractor. Roger V. Ollenburg was the principal designer and Kelly, Pittelko, Fritz & Forssen were the structural engineers.

Upon its completion the building had parking for 134 cars with about 60,000 square feet of rentable office space on five floors. The building featured automatic elevators, carpeted offices, suspended acoustical paneled ceilings, air conditioning, a shared conference room, and a lunch room with vending machines. The building was first sold in 1978 to San Francisco-based Rosenberg Real Estate Equity Fund II, Inc., for $3.1 million.

Chester Lindsey (1927–2003) received his architectural training from Washington State University (then Washington State College) in 1949. A native of Yakima, Lindsey worked briefly in California before arriving in Seattle in 1951. He worked for a series of employers in the city before establishing his own firm in 1957. Lindsey’s early designs in Seattle include the Chevrolet Motors Division building (1960–61) and the Sixth & Lenora Building (1962–63). Lindsey’s career was largely defined by commercial work, designing numerous office buildings in Seattle, and his professional relationship with developer Martin Selig (b. 1936). In addition to the 100 W Harrison towers, Lindsey and his firm also designed for Selig the Metropolitan Park Office Building towers (1988), Fourth and Battery Building (1978), and the soaring 76-story Seafirst Tower/Columbia Center (1985).


City of Seattle DCI Microfilm Records.

King County Property Record Card (c. 1938–1972), Washington State Archives.

Polk's Seattle Directories, 1890–1996.

Jeffrey Karl Ochsner, ed., Shaping Seattle Architecture: A Guide to the Architects (Seattle, University of Washington Press: 2014), 2nd edition.


Constructed in 1971 as an office building, this poured concrete commercial structure is located at the northeast corner of First Avenue W and W John Street; its site slopes down from north to south. The New Formalist six-story building stands on a poured concrete foundation; it sits on a heavy concrete base which features angled pilasters to create a pattern of bays along the concrete. This base shelters an underground parking structure, extends to the north as an enclosed parking structure, and to the west and south to form a mezzanine-level outdoor patio. The building has a flat roof with parapet. Vertical concrete pilasters taper from the building’s base to narrow at the parapet; these features define the building’s exterior. The concrete surfaces were sandblasted for a smooth finish. Curtain walls are present between the pilasters and continue the building’s vertical emphasis. The glazing and spandrel panels are tinted bronze. A flat roof cast concrete canopy shelters the main entrance, which is centered on the building’s west facade.

The building retains excellent integrity and is a good representative of a New Formalist commercial building.

Detail for 200 1ST AVE / Parcel ID 1989201020 / Inv # 0

Status: Yes - Inventory
Classication: Building District Status:
Cladding(s): Concrete, Glass - Curtain Wall Foundation(s): Concrete - Poured
Roof Type(s): Flat with Parapet Roof Material(s): Unknown
Building Type: Commercial/Trade - Professional Plan: Rectangular
Structural System: Concrete - Poured No. of Stories: six
Unit Theme(s): Architecture/Landscape Architecture
Changes to Plan: Intact
Changes to Windows: Intact
Changes to Original Cladding: Intact
Major Bibliographic References
King County Property Record Card (c. 1938-1972), Washington State Archives.
Shaping Seattle Architecture: A Historical Guide to the Architects. Jeffrey Karl Ochsner, ed. Seattle: University of Washington Press, 1994.

Photo collection for 200 1ST AVE / Parcel ID 1989201020 / Inv # 0

Photo taken Feb 27, 2018

Photo taken Feb 27, 2018

Photo taken Feb 27, 2018

Photo taken Jan 01, 1900
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