4.4 out of 10

Industrial District

Ranked 62nd best neighborhood in Seattle
47.5537375013002 -122.324170496103
Great for
  • Parks & Recreation
  • Internet Access
  • Public Transport
  • Parking
  • Eating Out
Not great for
  • Gym & Fitness
  • Childcare
  • Shopping Options
  • Medical Facilities
  • Pest Free
Who lives here?
  • Singles
  • Professionals
  • Families with kids
  • Retirees
  • Hipsters

Reviews

3/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 2/5
  • Safe & Sound 3/5
  • Clean & Green 2/5
  • Peace & Quiet 2/5
  • Eating Out 3/5
  • Nightlife 2/5
  • Parks & Recreation 2/5
  • Shopping Options 1/5
  • Lack of Traffic 3/5
  • Parking 4/5
Apr 29, 2016

"Port of Seattle & warehouses & rail yards"

The Industrial District is where I work a lot of the time. Its mostly just a bunch of warehouses. I work at the BNSF (railroad) Stacy Yard down there, which takes up a big chunk of the neighborhood. The reason its down there is to be close to the Port of Seattle, which is also a big piece of the Industrial District. In the port there are tons of huge cranes and loading docks that take the cargo off (or on) the ships, and put some of them on (or take them off) train cars. Then it becomes a giant puzzle where we put them all in order in different trains depending on where everything is going.

Theres been a bunch of protests nearby in the past couple of years because people dont want oil trains coming through the city. They have a bad habit of exploding when they crash and the ones that go through Seattle actually go in a tunnel under part of the city. But dont worry theres never been any oil train crashes in Seattle so far. I think the message from the protestors isnt really so much about safety but more an environmental one about not oil extracting. But they use the platform of exploding oil trains to make their point.

Other than BNSF, the port, and warehouses, theres some big box stores like Costco and Home Depot. Thats because its one of the only places near downtown where real estate is cheap enough for those stores to set up. Pretty convenient for me haha.

Oh yeah and theres also SODO where all the stadiums are. I think I mentioned the stadiums in the Pioneer Square review, but I guess technically they are part of the Industrial District. Anyways its where you go to watch Seahawks football or Mariners Baseball or sometimes there are other things there like big concerts (I could hear the Justin Beiber concert driving home from work one day last year. My ears still burn.)
3/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 3/5
  • Safe & Sound 3/5
  • Clean & Green 2/5
  • Peace & Quiet 2/5
  • Eating Out 3/5
  • Nightlife 3/5
  • Parks & Recreation 3/5
  • Shopping Options 3/5
  • Gym & Fitness 2/5
  • Internet Access 4/5
  • Lack of Traffic 2/5
  • Parking 2/5
  • Cost of Living 3/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 2/5
  • Public Transport 4/5
  • Medical Facilities 2/5
  • Schools 2/5
  • Childcare 2/5
2yrs+

"Factories Are Not The Only Thing Here"

The Industrial District definitely lives up to its name. However, there are also pockets of pleasure which will be discussed shortly. First, let's look at the location. The "District" extends from Safeco field (http://atmlb.com/eLaw2E) in the north to South Lucile Street in the south. The Duwamish Waterway (http://bitly.com/9vZ9KQ) and Interstate 5 hem it in from the west and east.

History

Dredged and filled at the beginning of the 20th century, the Industrial District quickly became home for many companies. In 1905 the Seattle Box Company (http://seattlebox.com) claimed the southeast corner of 4th Avenue S and S Spokane Street. Sears (http://sears.com) had a building constructed for their catalog distribution center in 1912. Starbucks (http://starbucks.com), however, now occupies that structure as of 1997. The District, unfortunately, is built upon mudflats and landfill. This is highly prone to earthquake shaking, which can cause extensive damage, giving corporations unease when considering their holdings in this neighborhood.

Demographics and Income

Surprisingly, a middle and upper-middle class area. The racial spread is highly diverse, with a predominance of singles and DINKS (Double Income No Kids). About half are married, with 17% having children at home. The age distribution is most dense in the 30s and 40s. The median household income is almost $12,000 higher than the Seattle average.

Culture

Everyone has a nickname, right? Well, so does the Industrial District. Probably more distinctive of the northwest portion of the area. It's name, "SoDo", is short for SOuth of DOwntown. The neighborhood is not for the faint of heart—a collective of artsy, hardworking souls find solace in this factory-clad community.

Real Estate

Another feature, maybe not so welcome, in the District is extensive railways for freight and passenger trains. The noise level here is one that would not be pleasant for residents. Few residential areas exist, except for some apartment buildings on the north or south side of the District. Over fifty percent own their square footage, staying vested in the area.

Local Business Tour (Restaurants, Pubs, Coffee Houses, Shops and other Amenities)

Numerous industries, as we know, are housed here. Another large facility is the 833rd Transportation Battalion on the Duwamish. It's purpose is to ship, clear for customs, and track Department of Defense cargo. Another company, maybe a bit more familiar, is Starbuck's (http://starbucks.com). Their corporate offices are located on the corner of South Lander Street and Utah Avenue S. It's hard to miss with their emblem affixed on the tower. A friend of mine works at this location and told me that this building used to have the largest office space west of the Mississippi. Yes, there's even a Starbuck's Cafe inside of the headquarters.

The artistic bent does not leave the choice of restaurants wanting: Pyramid Breweries (http://pyramidbrew.com) - Featuring year-round beers, rotating seasonals and a few unique offerings; Mac’s Smokehouse (http://bitly.com/gko4Tu) - An authentic barbecue rib taste experience; Cucina De Santis (http://bitly.com/ftZOoP) - A family owned business that cooks every Italian dish fresh; Pho Cyclo Cafe (http://phocyclocafe.com) - Authentic Vietnamese food with a Vietnam-encapsulating experience; El Camion (http://elcamionseattle.com) - Authentic Mexican, out of a trailer; SoDo Pizza (http://sodopizza.com) - Affordable and delicious pizza with delivery; Banzai Sushi (http://banzai-sushi.com) - Professional sushi chefs using only the choicest local ingredients; and Hudson (http://hudsonseattle.com) - A horsehoe bar and coffee parlor serving lunch, dinner and weekend brunch.

Along 1st Avenue South are almost an incalculable number of businesses, with many tending to be supply warehouses for local companies. A few of these include: Alafair Antique & Estate Co. (http://alafairantiques.com) - Specialize in collecting antiques from estate sales and collectors; SoDo Hydro (http://sodohydro.com) - Watering supplies for indoor gardening; Surplus Too Army Navy (http://surplustoo.com) - Surplus, working clothes, camping gear and more; The Showbox (http://showboxonline.com/sodo) - The 2nd addition to the Showbox family, opened in 2007 featuring attractive woodwork, brick design, and production capabilities; Metropolitan Appliance (http://metropolitanappliance.com) - Family owned for the last 60 years, enabling you to extend the life of your appliances; Esquin Wine Merchants (http://esquin.com) - Specializing in local wines from the Puget Sound region; Radar Hair & Records (http://radarhairandrecords.com) - Get your hair done [cut, color, style] and shop for vintage products; Island Life (http://island-life.com) - Purveying all things cool from across the globe; Island Dog Sign Company (http://islanddogsigns.com) - Seattle’s innovative and contemporary graphics and signage company; Ecohaus (http://ecohaus.com) - Green building supplies; Daniel Smith Art Supplies (http://danielsmith.com) - High quality art supplies for every need; Naked Juice Company (http://nakedjuice.com) - Natural, organic juices that grew out of a vision 20 years prior; and the Fonte Coffee Roaster (http://fontecoffee.com) - The roasting center for high end coffee beans served in the Fonte coffee bars.

Accommodations

One hotel, honestly, is worth mentioning. The others are for those who end up on the streets or if it’s the last opportunity for shelter in a nuclear holocaust. The single-handed overnight winner is The Silver Cloud Hotel ~ Stadium (http://bitly.com/fl2uYe) - A 100% non-smoking hotel directly across from Safeco Field and next to Qwest Field and event center (http://qwestfield.com).

Schools

If you don’t mind a little background machine/train/traffic noise during learning time, then SoDo schools are for you: Pacific Maritime Institute (http://mates.org) - The leader in maritime training with courses for any level; Art Wolfe’s Fine Art Prints (http://artwolfe.com) - Featuring photography from the world’s disappearing habitats; and Gracie Barra Seattle (http://bjjseattle.com) - The premier Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Academy in the Seattle metropolitan area.

Recreation

The Arena Sports Seattle Soccer Club (http://arenasports.net) is located on Highway 99 near the Battalion. They have a full schedule of league play for all ages. Other places of leisure, broadly speaking, are: The Vertigo Club (http://thevertigoclub.com) - Seattle’s only 1920s vintage private cigar club; Emerald City Trapeze (http://emeraldcitytrapeze.com) - A place where anyone can learn the art of trapeze flying; and Barron Bicycles (http://baronbicycles.com) - Custom built bikes for any taste.

Medical and Wellness Facilities

A good start to this tour is Dr. Denel’s Naturalpathy (http://doctordenel.com) - Whatever the non-emergency issue, it can begin traditional/natural diagnosis here; Seattle Therapy Network (http://seattle-therapy-network.com) - Creating community through pediatric occupational and physical therapy; and Quest Diagnostics (http://questdiagnostics.com) - A leading force in testing diagnostics.

Spiritual Centers and Churches

One thing forgotten (or not realistic to have) in the Industrial District are spiritual centers. Don’t worry if your soul aches for nourishment, because surrounding neighborhoods can satisfy with their established institutions.

Transportation Access and Tips

A commuter’s dream... Access to Interstate 5, Interstate 90, Highway 99, Highway 509, the West Seattle Bridge, and arterial streets into downtown. Unfortunately, there are not more people living within the neighborhood to enjoy this plethora of transportation platforms. One last downside to street driving: trucks, and lots of them. During high traffic times, many cyclists can be seen riding on Marginal Way or even 1st Avenue.

Summary

Even though this "neighborhood" isn't a place too many choose to call home, it still provides space to large companies and transit that are the backbone of Seattle. Take a drive through and find a spot to eat while learning about the service side of Puget Sound.
Pros
  • Inexpensive housing
  • Unique dining options
  • Good access to Interstate and major highways
Cons
  • Noisy environment
  • Multiple industrial sites
  • Heavy traffic on arterial streets
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Singles
  • Hipsters
3/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 3/5
  • Safe & Sound 2/5
  • Clean & Green 2/5
  • Pest Free 3/5
  • Peace & Quiet 2/5
  • Eating Out 3/5
  • Nightlife 3/5
  • Parks & Recreation 1/5
  • Shopping Options 1/5
  • Gym & Fitness 1/5
  • Internet Access 4/5
  • Lack of Traffic 2/5
  • Cost of Living 3/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 4/5
  • Public Transport 4/5
  • Medical Facilities 3/5
  • Schools 3/5
  • Childcare 3/5
2yrs+

"SoDo Development Target"

Maybe the most important part of the Industrial District is SoDo, the common name for the area south of downtown Seattle. SoDo actually comprises just the northwest corner of this neighborhood, but it has some of the most important attractions in the whole area like Safeco Field, where the Seattle Mariners play their home games and Qwest Field, which the Seattle Seahawks and the Seattle Sounders Football Club call home field.

The area has an unglamorous history in Seattle, having been developed in the early 1900s, most of the buildings were built on the dredged mudflats and lowlands that were once part of Elliott Bay. As a consequence of the development, the land that it’s built on is prone to liquefaction, which makes this area more vulnerable than most to earthquake damage. Presumably, stabilization efforts are in consideration to compliment the somewhat controversial ideas to develop housing and residencies as well as non-industrial businesses in the Industrial District. This idea is met with concern from owners of industrial businesses in the area who may have to accommodate changes in zoning laws or any number of regulations that would make the area more inviting for residents and businesses. Still, the area has undeniable appeal for development south of downtown.
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Singles
3/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 1/5
  • Safe & Sound 2/5
  • Clean & Green 1/5
  • Pest Free 2/5
  • Eating Out 2/5
  • Nightlife 1/5
  • Parks & Recreation 1/5
  • Shopping Options 1/5
  • Gym & Fitness 1/5
  • Lack of Traffic 2/5
  • Childcare 1/5
2yrs+

"It’s an eyesore, but a commerce haven"

It’s an eyesore with all the cranes and metal container – barges and trains are always in the area loading and unloading cargo to take it to and from the city. The landscape is that of tracks and steel, it’s where all the bad guys go in the movies. However, without this area of Seattle we wouldn’t be Seattle.

The area isn’t void of life, and the people who go there daily to work aren’t the only people who frequent the area. Some apartment buildings are in the area and a restaurant or two have cropped up. Some artists use some of the warehouse spaces as studios and the vibe isn’t just commerce.
It’s not the cleanest part of Seattle and it’s not for those people who like peace and quiet, to live here is to live surround by nose which sounds like a construction site on overdrive. But it’s a thriving area that helps make Seattle a thriving city.
Recommended for
  • Singles
3/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 1/5
  • Safe & Sound 3/5
  • Clean & Green 2/5
  • Peace & Quiet 2/5
  • Parks & Recreation 2/5
  • Lack of Traffic 3/5
  • Cost of Living 4/5
  • Public Transport 5/5
2yrs+

"The industrial center of the city"

As the name suggests, the Industrial District is the main industrial area of Seattle. The Industrial District has two sections, East and West, separated by the manmade Harbor Island. The district is bounded on the east by Interstate 5, on the north by King Street, and on the South by railway lines. There are many main roads running through the Industrial District, including 1st and 4th Avenues South, the Alaskan Way Viaduct, South Spokane Street, and East Marginal Way.

The Northwest portion of this area is known as SoDo, which originally referred to the location South of the Kingdome Stadium. Since the stadium was removed, it has now come to mean South of Downtown. This part of the Industrial District is home to Safeco Field and Qwest Field, Seattle's two major-league stadiums.

Though a lot goes on here, I wouldn't want to live here. Noisy and somewhat dirty, there are few community amenities for residents. Though there are some apartments here, a better option for those looking to live near the Industrial District would be the area of West Seattle located to the west. Besides being busy, much of the area is built on what was once mudflats or landfill, making the buildings here prone to damage during earthquakes.
2/5
2yrs+

"Best Asian food in Seattle"

The International District of Seattle is a relatively small area for any homes or condos. The area is located just south of First Hill and east of Pioneer Square. This area is a great place to find the best Asian food in Seattle. There are more little restaurants than you can count.

The Seattle International District has been called the only place in the U.S. where Chinese Americans, Japanese Americans, Filipino Americans, Vietnamese Americans, Korean Americans, Laotian Americans, Cambodian Americans, and other Asian Americans live in one neighborhood.

Hing Hay Park, at the corner of S. King Street and Maynard Avenue S., is considered a hub of the International District. The Wing Luke Asian Museum is an important cultural institution in the neighborhood, as was the Nippon Kan Theatre until its recent closure.

Kobe Terrace/Danny Woo Garden, on the steep slope between I-5 and S. Main Street, is another important site, where many neighborhood residents have urban gardens. Perhaps
the neighborhood's most notable establishment is the Asian supermarket Uwajimaya. Across Fifth Avenue from Uwajimaya Village is the Union Station office complex, built where abandoned Union Pacific Railroad tracks once ran, and home to much of Amazon. COM’s operations.
Recommended for
  • Professionals
  • Singles

Travelling to Industrial District?

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Unranked Streets in Industrial District

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