The (relatively) giant retailer coming to E Pike will be a… grocery store

As much as the return of the Capitol Hill Block Party has some remembering the “good old” days of Pike/Pine circa 1997, the changes underway on E Pike may eventually leave you pining for the CHBP days of yore — or, at least, remembering a day when there weren’t all those pesky large grocery stores on every block.

CHS reported this spring about the mysterious, relatively huge, 10,000 square-foot retailer making plans to join a new mixed-use development under construction on E Pike:

According to permits, the project’s plans for multiple retail units along the street have been pushed aside in favor of one combined “retail store” in the project. At just over 10,000 square feet, the store would be about half the size of Elliott Bay Book Company, for example, but twice the size of the still-empty OfficeMax that shuttered on Broadway earlier this year.

The developer wasn’t talking.

But CHS has learned that the project is being lined up as a grocery store involving an unknown company with plans to join what will be a wave of new market offerings joining the area in coming years. By 2017, a Whole Foods Market is destined to rise at Broadway and Madison as part of a 16-story apartment development. And developers say a “Portland-based grocer” is in talks to become the anchor retail tenant in the development surrounding Capitol Hill Station.

We’re not sure what that leaves as far as grocer possibilities to join E Pike where hundreds of new apartments will soon join the market in the blocks between Broadway and Summit. Maybe Samuel Pitts is getting back into the business.

UPDATE 7/24/2015 10:00 AM: Uh oh. In a letter dated July 20th, DPD says the plan for the mystery project to combine what was planned as multiple storefronts on E Pike doesn’t jibe with zoning. The developers have the opportunity to reply to the correction notice.Screen Shot 2015-07-24 at 10.10.44 AM Screen Shot 2015-07-24 at 10.10.55 AM

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18 thoughts on “The (relatively) giant retailer coming to E Pike will be a… grocery store

  1. Great to hear about the “Portland-based retailer” coming. I noticed a New Seasons is going in on Mercer Island as well ;).

    Maybe it’s a metropolitan market? We are looking at an extremely saturated grocery market on the hill by 2018 or so…

  2. Not sure we really needed another one, but I’ll reserve judgement.

    At least it’s not a bank branch or yoga studio.

  3. The design review from DPD does NOT allow for one huge retailer “The proposal should be modified to show that the retail spaces are designed for maximum 50’ street frontage per businesses on E. Pike St and E. Pine St” If they put in one retailer they will be in violation of their design review. Not to mention that the justification for the destruction of the existing buildings in favor of new buildings was for density, where is the density in one retailer per block buildings??

      • Thank you, They have violated a lot of the regulations covering the construction and now are going to violate the planning and review guidelines as well. It is a shame that Seattle just lets large construction have free run of the city no matter who gets hurt!

  4. At half the size of the Elliott Bay Book Company, it will be on the small side for a grocery store. It sounds like it will be more of a specialty (AKA very expensive) grocer.

    All I can say is that any grocer willing to put a decent store in the CD will be loved by residents. It is long overdue. Even a Safeway would look pretty good.

    • Good grief. We need another Safeway when the CD already has one at 23rd and Madison? We need another Trader Joe’s at Broadway when there’s one like 6 blocks away? WTF?

      • If one lives south of Jackson, or even south of Cherry, the Safeway at 23rd and Madison is not within reasonable walking distance when one is carrying three bags of groceries. The CD does extend fairly far south of 23rd and Union.

    • NO! NO! NO! Worst grocery store ever! Highest prices I’ve ever seen and the most attitude you can possibly get from employees. A downright awful place.

      • So….you’re saying it’s a perfect match for too-much-disposable-income Capitol Hill? You realize you just made their business case, right?

  5. That’s awesome. I’m all for more grocery store competition here.

    Either a fishmonger or a nice grocer with a good fish counter would be great. Taylor is great for shellfish but for the finned kind we don’t have much. QFC doesn’t excel at it and the co-op has some good stuff but the clerks there can be kind of rude and a I’m not entirely sure I trust them handling food like that.

  6. I have it on good authority that New Seasons is looking at Capitol Hill, but my source says it will be above the new light rail station. Maybe they’ve decided for a faster timeline.