Washington State

Architecture of the “U” District, Seattle

The University District, bordering the University of Washington campus, is at once eclectic, colorful, nostalgic, utilitarian, funky, and a tad seedy in parts. This exhibit illustrates representative architecture of the “U” District.

 

click to view image   Gritty gargoyle, University Manor Apartments, 43rd St NE.
click to view image   Lobby, Wilsonian Apartments. University Way NE. Built as a 5-star hotel in 1923, the ornate structure is considered among the grander residences of the “U” District.
click to view image   Entrance, Wilsonian Apartments.
click to view image   University Manor Apartments
click to view image   University Bridge. Entryway to the “U” District from Capitol Hill to the south. The drawbridge, providing maritime access to Lake Union, is juxtaposed by Interstate 5 rising overhead.
click to view image   Interstate 5 over Lake Union inlet.
Photographed from the University Bridge.
click to view image   Towards Union Bay. Looking to the southeast, with the University Way commercial area in foreground, dorminated on this block by the Malloy Apartments built in 1928. The University of Washington campus lies beyond, with Union Bay skirting the horizon.
click to view image   Café Allegro. The oldest café in the “U” District, a cozy and at times boisterous hideaway offering patrons a choice of salons.
click to view image   Entrance to Café Allegro at left along a commercial alleyway
click to view image   Aerial view of “U” District above Lake Union. The “U” District begins a few blocks up from the lake, which is bordered by the Eastlake neighborhood. University of Washington buildings predominate at center right.
click to view image   Franz Lehwalder housing. Two rustic structures offer quality accommodation and a cozy patch of green. The green house was originally a carriage house in the late 1800s.
click to view image   Ranice Apartments, Brooklyn Ave NE.
click to view image   Alley house
click to view image   El Monterey condominium apartments, 11th Ave NE.
click to view image   Varsity Arms Apartments, Brooklyn Ave NE. Classic traditional “U” District housing.
click to view image   House, 12th Ave NE. A diminishing number of single-family homes, the majority in just fair condition, remain in the “U” District as higher-density development proceeds; yet the area is far from gentrified.
click to view image   House next to utilitarian apartments, 12th Ave NE.
click to view image   Mary Lou Apartments. Built as a single-family home; presently sub-divided into eight flats as per the mailboxes by the door.
click to view image   Bulldog News Café. A “U” District landmark on University Way.
click to view image   Coffee bar at Bulldog News
click to view image   Deca Hotel apex. The Deca, the premier hotel in the “U” District, opened in 1931 and was originally named the Meany Hotel. The 16-storey structure is the second tallest building in the “U” District, after the University of Washington Plaza pictured further down the page.
click to view image   Deca Hotel lobby
click to view image   “U” District Fire Station. An art-deco classic constructed in 1929, the station was most recently renovated in 2010.
click to view image   “U” District Post Office. The distinctive façade has contributed to its long-time landmark status.
click to view image   Along University Way
click to view image   Waiting for the bus by the Neptune Theater
click to view image   Crosstown traffic on 45th St NE in early morning fog and rain
click to view image   La Paz Apartments and Magus Books. The venerable bookstore is the oldest independent used book store in Seattle.
click to view image   Magus Books
click to view image   Psychic establishment. Photographed at Eastlake bordering the “U” District.
click to view image   Westerly view of “U” District and adjacent Wallingford residential neighborhood. The Olympic Mountains loom sixty miles distant. The billboard at left foreground publicizes the extension of underground light rail to the “U” District from downtown Seattle in early 2016.
click to view image   New apartment buildings at sunrise. Construction is underway on the northwestern periphery of the “U” District. This entire block of 12th Ave NE was built in 2015. On the street, “Route 49” electric trolleys await their morning runs downtown via Capitol Hill.
click to view image   Close-up view of penthouse level of new apartment buildings
click to view image   Portage Bay Café. Upscale and strictly organic.
click to view image   Helix-Ellipse Apartments
click to view image   View from University Motel Suites
click to view image   Dick’s Drive-In. Located down the road in Capitol Hill, time appears to have stood still at this classic eatery. The car is a Volvo P1800 Sport Wagon (1971-1973).
click to view image   La Mirada Apartments
click to view image   Apartment building, 42nd St NE.
click to view image   Audiology building, 42nd St NE.
click to view image   Jim’s Cameras, which sadly closed in late 2012, featured a fascinating selection of older cameras and parts thereof. This grand establishment epitomized the “back to the Fifties” atmosphere retained in many Seattle neighborhoods.
click to view image   University of Washington Plaza. The sole skyscraper in the “U” District, formerly the SafeCo Plaza, constructed in 1975.
click to view image   Rooming house. Photographed in 2011, this building was demolished in early 2013 to make way for construction of the “U” District underground light rail station.
click to view image   Alley
click to view image   Alley house (2)
click to view image   Back view of house, 12th Ave NE.
click to view image   Back view of house sub-divided into rental units, 12th Ave NE.
click to view image   Closeup, Apartment building, Brooklyn Ave NE.
click to view image   Apartment building, Brooklyn Ave NE.
click to view image   House, 12th Ave NE. Photographed in early 2014, this residence appeared to have recently been used as a communal house. Located among new construction, the home seems ripe for demolition.
click to view image   New apartment building providing public housing, 12th Ave NE.
click to view image   Apartments off Brooklyn Ave.
click to view image   Rainy Seattle morning. Back-alley view from the photographer’s room in the “U” District.
click to view image   Beneath Interstate 5. Photographed at Eastlake.
click to view image   Moon at sunrise over new construction. Westerly view.
click to view image   Aerial view of underground light rail station under construction on Brooklyn Ave. Photographed March 2017.
click to view image   Brutalist architecture of University of Washington. The two most “Brutalist” buildings this photographer has seen, these off-campus structures jut into the southern residential area of the “U” District. The buildings are not typical of UW architecture.
click to view image    
click to view image   University Bridge up

 

Roberta Apartments

Roberta Apartments

 
Copyright © 2003-2017 IconicPhoto