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Bill’s Off Broadway is reopening after a two year construction hiatus

The long wait is finally over for Capitol Hill pizza lovers, Seahawks fans, and morning beer drinkers alike. Bill’s Off Broadway is ready to reopen at Harvard Ave and E Pine after taking a nearly two year timeout from its 35-year run.

Doors are expected to open at 4 PM on Monday, according to Bill’s owner Don Stevens (and the countdown clock that just went live on the new Bill’s website). There are no special celebrations planned for the reopening — Stevens said he’s just eager to getting back to doing what Bill’s does best.

“It’s nice to declare it’s time for people to come back in and have a good time,” Stevens told CHS. “I’m looking forward to sitting down and having a beer with some of my old Capitol Hill friends.”

UPDATE: Beers, baseball, and pizza. All was right again inside Bill’s Monday afternoon as customers streamed in for the bar’s grand reopening. CHS was there for a first look at the new space.

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Longtime owner Don Stevens surveys the first pizzas from Bill’s Off Broadway 2.0 (Image: Alex Garland for CHS)

The revamped Bill’s will include an expanded food menu and a beer list kicked up to 18 taps, as well as a couple dozen more chairs and a bigger kitchen. However, Stevens said much of the wood paneling and fixtures from the original restaurant were saved to preserve the old Bill’s charm.

“Anybody that has a history with Bill’s Off Broadway is going to walk in there and know they’re in Bill’s Off Broadway,” Stevens said.

Bill’s temporarily closed in December 2013 to make way for the two-year construction and preservation project that has transformed its nearly 100-year-old auto row-era building into a new 95 apartment unit, mixed-use project.

The return of the much-loved pizza and beer spot came just in time for NFL football. The Seahawks will have their first preseason game on Friday night at CenturyLink Field. Of course, Bill’s will be showing the game as well as every other Seahawks game this year.

Buzz about the reopening kicked-up last month when the new Bill’s sign went up on the corner of Harvard Ave and E Pine. Those of you playing along can now check one more opening off the CHS list of 29 bars and restaurants to look forward to this year.

Red Label Moto will be making a return to the Bill’s building as well, but owners of the geolocation-twisted 15th Ave Garage decided to move on after deciding the revamped garage wouldn’t suit their needs.

CHS first told you about the Bill’s building plans way back in September 2012. In the time since, Stevens opened a second Bill’s up in Greenwood (which will remain as the E Pine location reopens) and got a short reprieve on Capitol Hill. Along the way, the building home to Bill’s since it replaced Mothers Tavern in the early ’70s was rejected as a possible Seattle landmark.

Meanwhile, major construction above Bill’s on the Cue building is now complete, as residents started moving in last month.

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5 thoughts on “Bill’s Off Broadway is reopening after a two year construction hiatus

  1. So cool to see the “old” space tucked in beneath the new development. Kind of reminds me of the homestead holdouts who refused to sell to big developers. I never visited the old Bill’s and probably won’t visit the new Bill’s but it makes me happy knowing its there.

  2. Let’s also be thankful Stevens seems to have resisted the temptation to upscale the joint with $15 artisan cocktails and overpriced popular-ingredient-or-preparation-of-the-moment menu items, and stick with his good old, reliable – and quite reasonably priced – basic pizza, sandwiches, & entrees.

    • You gotta to stick with your audience that made you successful. However, the rent price could be waaaay higher based on the new construction and may very well cause them to raise prices from what they were in 2013.