Pike Place Market
Pike Place Market is an open market in Seattle, Washington, USA. Opened on August 17, 1907, it is one of the oldest continuously operating public farmers’ markets. It is named for its central street, Pike Place, which runs northwest from Pike Street to Virginia Street on the western edge of downtown Seattle. Place Market is Seattle’s the majority popular tourist destination and the 35th most visited tourist attraction in the world, with more than 10 million visitors annually.
The Pike Place Market is a unique place; globally recognized as America’s premier farmers market. This nine-acre historic district welcomes ten million visitors each year for the unique sights and sounds of the Downtown Seattle Public Market. More than 100 farmers, 190 artisans, almost 300 business people, and 240 street performers.
The market is built on the edge of a steep hill and consists of more than a few lower levels that are under the main level. Each has a variety of unique stores, including antique stores, comic and collectors stores, small family-friendly restaurants, and one of the oldest head-end stores in Seattle. In the covered galleries, local farmers and artisans sell all year round in the galleries at the tables they rent in the market, in line with the founding mission and goal of the market: to enable consumers to know the maker.
The smallest Pike Place Public Market Historic District listed on the United Nations National Register of Historic Places is roughly bounded by First Avenue, Virginia Street, Western Avenue, and a building wall halfway between the streets.
Union and Pike Running Parallel
Halfway between these two definitions, the Seattle Department of Neighborhoods’ official 28,000-square-foot Pike Place Market Historic District includes the Pike Place Public Market Historic District. Well recognized, and a little smaller lot between Western Avenue and Washington State Route 98, on the market side towards Elliott Bay.
These different definitions of the market area are partly the result of disputes between nature conservationists and property developers. For example, the National Historic Preservation Act of 1966 created the Washington Advisory Historic Preservation Council. Victor Steinbrück convinced the advisory board of the novella at the end of the 1960s to designate 69,000 m² as a historic quarter. Developer pressure and the “Seattle Establishment” soon sank to a tenth of that area. Today’s historical place names lie between these extremes.
Part of the market is in what was originally marshland under the cliffs west of Pike Place. In the late 19th century, West Street was already a cross street that ran more or less similar to the market coast. The Railway Avenue (now Alaska,) was further built on the pile.