March 2015

Waterfall ParkI love this time of year, the longer days and so much more light, and this year…wow, the winter that wasn’t! We have lots going on in Pioneer Square. New buildings, new businesses, the launch of theSounders season, and we hear rumors that eventually, we will see a streetcar. Alliance staff are hard at work on a series of events and planning processes that will help shape our neighborhood.
  • We are well into the research phase of the Design Framework for Streetscapes and will soon be at work on the Parks & Neighborhood Gates design process, more to come
  • Please anticipate neighborhood meetings regarding the waterfront and streetcar and other construction projects as they unfold

Construction, loss of parking, what to do?? 

We have been working hard for a couple of years to manage the neighborhood parking supply. We are subsidizing short term parking for shoppers, clients, 1st Thursday and other visitors. We are working closely with Commute Seattle to support neighborhood businesses in using public transportation for commuters. If you would like to learn more please contact

Get out, get involved, visit a new shop or one of your long time favorites. It really does take a all of us to make a better neighborhood. Have a lovely month. See you in the neighborhood!

Leslie G. Smith, Executive Director


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Business & Community Development Update

The energy in the neighborhood is palpable, a great feeling as spring unfolds in Pioneer Square. The reasons are many:

Intrigue Chocolate Co. has signed the lease on the new retail space just east of the intersection of Jackson and Occidental. Owners Aaron Barthel and Karl Mueller currently operate from a small kitchen down Washington street west of 1st avenue on the second floor of a historic building. Despite being a bit tricky to find, their walk-in traffic has grown to exceed the small shop’s capacity. A dedicated street-level shop will give them more room for their conversational-style retail and chocolate tasting experience. Look for their sign to go in the window in a couple months. Want to help support the build-out of the space and chocolate tasting bar? Check out their Community Sourced Capital fundraising campaign.

• Could we be more excited? The Sounders FC  season kicks into gear with the first match onSunday, March 8. GO SOUNDERS!

• The opening of Nordo’s Culinarium and “Don Nordo del Midwest”, the inaugural show in Pioneer Square’s Globe Building at 109 S Main will be next month. Check out the article in this month’s City Arts, then order your tickets at

Nirmal’s will be serving “re-imagined” Indian food on Occidental Ave in the Interurban Building soon. The build-out is happening and plans for signage and a sidewalk café will go to the Preservation Board are in the works. Gita Bangera, the owner, reports that Chef Nirmal’s visa was approved. He’ll be arriving in Pioneer Square in the next few weeks.

The Faerie Queen at 90 Yesler Way is shooting to be open for lunch and happy hour on Monday, March 16th! Una Kim, the owner, says the focus will be seafood and they’ll be serving oysters for lunch and happy hour Monday-Friday.

Kraken Congee, a popular pop-up restaurant with an enthusiastic following, will open in the neighborhood very soon. Where? You’ll need to wait just a little longer for that announcement. To be among the first to know, follow them here. (Or follow us at @PioneerSquare for up-to-the-minute neighborhood updates.)

• We’re thrilled about the opening of the Mariane Ibrahim Gallery at 608 2nd Ave. “Maimouna Guerresi—Light Bodies” will no doubt draw lots of attention during this month’s First Thursday Art Walk. Stop by and welcome them to the neighborhood!

Gallery Frames completed their move to 311 3rd Ave S. Though Daniel says they’re still getting settled, they’re open for business and eager for everyone to stop by to see the new digs.

Sweetgrass – a new organic, whole foods restaurant is scheduled to open this fall in the long-vacant space on 1st Ave S between Damn the Weather and Tango Zulu. Their plans for a juice bar – and juice growlers – are creating quite the buzz. Colleen Kerr and Michael Moon are opening another location in a different Seattle neighborhood this summer, but we all know where they will really shine, right?

Girin is still on track to open their seasonal Korean restaurant in Stadium Place next month. Chef Brandon Kirksey, formerly of San Francisco’s flour+water and Ethan Stowell’s Tavolata will lead the kitchen.

• As you may have heard, the Post Office at 93 S. Jackson is looking for a new space. We are working with the USPS real estate brokers to help them find another space in the neighborhood. We’ll keep you posted as more information is available.

• AND construction on 200 Occidental will soon be underway. The developer for this game-changing development is Urban Visions. Weyerhaeuser – in case you haven’t heard – will be the office tenant.

• And for Pioneer Square business owners who’d like to learn more about the implementation of the Minimum Wage Ordinance, there are a few public meetings that may be helpful, including an event sponsored by OED and WorkSource scheduled for April 8. I’m compiling a list, so give me a shout if you’d like details. You can also go direct to the City’s Minimum Wage website for more information.

Wow. That’s a lot of information, yet I’m sure I forgot something. These are great times in our neighborhood. Get out there to see what you can see and stay in touch!
Karen True –

Bertha and Progress on the SR 99 Tunnel: 

First Thursday Speaker Series 

Thursday, March 5Bertha Breakthrough:

6:00-6:30 p.m.

Milepost 31, 211 First Ave. S., Seattle
Admission is free.

Bertha, the SR 99 tunneling machine, reached a big milestone in February by breaking through the wall of the pit crews will use to access the machine and make repairs. Join us this Thursday at Milepost 31 as we discuss Bertha’s breakthrough and the next steps for Seattle Tunnel Partners as they work to resume tunneling.

Speaker: Matt Preedy, WSDOT’s deputy administrator for the Alaskan Way Viaduct Replacement Program

After the talk, be sure to leave enough time to explore the rest of the First Thursday Art Walk in Pioneer Square. Milepost 31 is open Tuesdays through Saturdays from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., and stays open until 8 p.m. on First Thursdays.

Free parking is available for First Thursday art walk patrons in Pioneer Square. Please for more information about participating garages.

Please send an email to to suggest future Speaker Series topics.

graffitiReport Graffiti in PSQ by Phone, Web, or App!
Graffiti-ed walls are magnets for more tags and vandalism. Be on the look out to report graffiti, and other issues such as potholes and more through the Find It, Fix It app or online or call 206-684-7587.
If graffiti shows up on your property, make a police report by calling 206-625-5011. Learn more.
PARK-SMARTERSend Visitors to

Help neighborhood visitors find low-rate parking by spreading the word about
The Alliance for Pioneer Square is partnering with WSDOT, the City of Seattle, Downtown Seattle Association and nearby parking garages to offer parking spaces for just $3/hour, up to four hours. Read more.
Email to find out how to post this information to your business website.

Occidental Park Let your Voice be Heard


Occidental Park

If you are familiar with Occidental Square Park and/or Westlake Park in downtown Seattle. Please take a moment and take this Parks Survey. Parks staff learn from your feedback! It takes about 3 minutes to complete.

Who Needs Curbspace?

Interested in curbspace, come on we know you are. Please take SDOT’s survey regarding use of curbspace downtown.