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Your trips to Northgate are over: Target coming to downtown Seattle

As much as we value local, independent and small, the Target chain of stores is a consistent entrant in the “what Capitol Hill needs” Olympics. In a study commissioned in 2008 by the Capitol Hill Chamber of Commerce, survey respondents living on the Hill cited Northgate as an area of Seattle they visit most often for off-Hill shopping needs. The presumption is the mall is the big draw — but don’t dismiss the Target effect.


Here’s the news from the Seattle Times:

The national discount department-store chain has bought the three-story office and retail space at the base of the 24-story Newmark condo tower on Second Avenue between Pike and Union streets.

The 103,000-square-foot commercial space, known since 2008 as Pike Plaza, will be home to a smaller-format Target store, the seller, Seattle-based HAL Real Estate, said in a prepared statement.

Target paid $15.5 million for the property, according to county records. The purchase includes a 250-stall garage.

While Hill residents might pine for a large retailer like Target, they don’t necessarily want it in the neighborhood. Sound Transit’s survey of community desires for the development of the light rail station on Broadway contains a few resident-submitted references to Target, each noting the utility of the chain and each noting that a large store wouldn’t fit the nature of Capitol Hill.

Last year, a major redevelopment of the Goodwill site on Jackson that was to include a Target store fell through and was canceled. The company has also recently come under fire for its support of an anti-gay marriage Minnesota gubernatorial candidate.

While the new store will please many central Seattle shoppers, the downtown opening could mean the elimination of one potential tenant for the Joule retail space on Broadway where the smaller format Target reportedly planned for downtown might make a suitable anchor tenant for the development.

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39 thoughts on “Your trips to Northgate are over: Target coming to downtown Seattle

  1. OK, that’s it. I’m selling my car! If they could get that store open by next Tuesday, more the better.

  2. I’m very excited about this! I just moved to Capitol Hill from the suburbs about 6 months ago, and I’ve adjusted to walking and local stuff and rarely driving, except I really miss Target for those random mid-week shopping trips.

  3. yeah, I do most of my household-needs type shopping at target. won’t miss the crowded-as-hell-at-all-times route 41 at all.

  4. Oh yay, a giant store full of crap from China that will drive even more of our beloved local businesses into the ground. Go to hell Target…and take your foreign-made crap with you.

  5. I bet you are excited… pretty soon downtown and the hill will look just like the shitty suburbs you moved from.

    If you guys are going to whoop and cheer over Target moving in, don’t come back crying when your favorite little shop goes under.

  6. Smart move for Target. That exact area of 1st Ave is famed for its shopping, moderate priced past – Penny’s – Rhodes – Mc Dougal/Southwick – it is a natural shopping location for Target …. and, it is not Capitol Hill, so chill out.

    Target and IGA within a block. Nice.

  7. I’m excited too – and anchor stores like this are the sort of thing that will help those smaller stores stay in business because the big stores draw the crowds. I don’t think that me hitting up Target for some laundry detergent and a new 3-pack of boxers is going to harm Ian or Fancy/Schmancy.

  8. I am so glad Target is moving into downtown areas. They are also looking at space in downtown San Francisco. Welcome Target! I can’t wait. It’s the only reason I go to Northgate.

  9. i agree with curly. we should be encouraging target and the like to locate in dense downtown areas, precisely so that we can avoid the suburban nightmares they usually are – acres of asphalt parking. this will be a good thing for folks who can walk there instead of driving all the way north or south to westwood village. aside from the anti-gay stuff as of late, i am all for this.

  10. Yes, we can get things at other stores but it’s cheaper at Target. It’s a good company who gives 5% of their profits to the community. They are not awful like Wal-Mart…

    I’m so excited about this I called my friend vacationing in Hawaii!

    Joule would have been a very good spot but it does not fit our neighborhood. I am already bummed about Panera coming on Broadway…Panera is expensive and screams the suburb, ulk!

    Yey, Target!!! Just say no to cars!

  11. target generally sells stuff that is not sold in the city, so i don’t think they will be making many small merchants go out of business. seriously, what small business can you buy a laptop from within 5 miles of capitol hill? how about a zune or ipod?

  12. electronics. i could get them online but right now i cannot get them unless i go to costco in sodo or out to northgate or the burbs.

  13. I’m psyched about this new development. Sometimes you just need a handful of general merchandise and Target’s the most convenient place. And to those with the social consciences: have you run full background checks on all your local merchants? What you don’t know may hurt you.

  14. Downtown has needed a discount place since the much beloved (and very successful) Woolworth went out due to corporate idiocy. Giving up a core business that has a great brand name and prime locations in the centers of all the big American cities to focus on specialty stores selling athletic shoes in malls was such a great idea.

    And yes, it sells stuff made in China. Who doesn’t, including our hallowed local stores? Blame the WTO and Clinton for that one. Until we bring back tariffs and start supporting American jobs, that will be the reality. But that’s not a glamorous hipster angercause, so no one cares.

    As for the anti-gay donation scandal: I’ve been a round the block long enough to know the score on corporate donations. It was a stupid thing to do, but it was motivated out of greed and not hate (these GOP candidates would make it much easier for their corporate overlords if they would just drop the idiotic social issues that appeal to the moron fringe)

    All in all, I think it’s great. A Target on the same spot where once the worlds largest Penny’s stood – and in the building where I had my first threeway!

  15. Count me in as happy. Target is the only reason we ever go to Northgate (I’ve never even been inside the mall proper).

    I’m not really sure what local businesses are likely to be hurt by Target. Most of what we get there on a regular basis (household consumables, bath products) could be had at Safeway or Walgreen’s (not exactly Mom and Pop stores, either) but at 20-30% more. And as has been pointed out, there is an absolute void of consumer electronics retailers in the urban core here, which is utterly mystifying to me. They sell clothes, but it would seem that their main competitors at those price points are what, Old Navy and maybe H&M?

  16. “I’m not really sure what local businesses are likely to be hurt by Target.”

    Other chains, Bed Bath & Beyond, I imagine. Not the Mom & Pops.

  17. I guess if all you care about is cheap cheap cheap, then Target is for you. I wonder how they make all that stuff so unbelievably cheap? I’m sure it’s not by screwing over the communities they inhabit, undercutting prices until everyone else is outta business and then hiking the prices up. I’m sure it’s not by underpaying and under insuring the working stiffs that staff it. It can’t possibly be that they are raping the environment for cheap materials, right? And I’m sure they would never carry goods made by little kids in foreign countries or workers in filthy sweatshops. So ya, go ahead and shop your heart out at Target guilt free. I’m sure they’re an absolutely awesome corporation with good intentions and that they are coming here with the singular goal of helping our community, right guys?

    http://www.alternet.org/economy/35610/

  18. Target was previously a shining example of pro-equality, but ever since their decision to donate $150,000 to MN Forward,a group actively supporting anti-gay candidate Tom Emmer, I refuse to welcome their arrival, and will boycott the store until a donation to a pro-equality candidate is given in an equal amount.

  19. Do you shop at the Urban outfitters on Broadway? The owner of that store supports Rick Santorum.

    Or how about American Apparel? The quote from their CEO:

    Here’s the text of the newest American Apparel Ad:
    “Women initiate most domestic violence, yet out of a thousand cases of domestic violence, maybe one is involving a man. And this has made a victim of culture out of women.” – Dov Charney

  20. It’s about time! Even a scaled down Target will be nicer than nothing. And maybe it will help improve that area of downtown which has become a bit downtrodden, especially at night.

  21. I recently sent this email to all top executives at Target. I hope you will join me in not giving right-wing fundamentalist our hard-earned money:

    “I wanted to let you know how unsatisfactory Target’s corporate response has been to the outrage regarding your contribution to the religious ultra-right. No amount of awards for simply not persecuting your LGBT staff members can offset this irresponsible act. To assume that not one of the other three candidates would support business and economic growth is absurd and no rational person will except this excuse. Spending profits gained from purchases by LGBT customers (and their friends and extended family members who love them, like myself) to attempt to deny these same people equal protection under the law for their families, is despicable. Either do better or stay out of the political arena… it’s the only ethical choice.

    Since hearing about what you have done, I have stopped shopping at Target which in the past has been my favorite store. I have spent thousands over the last decade and contributed to your success. It sickens me that you have chosen to use my hard-earned money to hurt this persecuted and misunderstood community. I am, on my own, circulating a pledge to boycott Target until you make concrete amends to those you have harmed (saying “we’re so sorry” or “we’ll talk about it” is not enough). It’s the young (who in the vast majority accept gay people and have openly gay friends) and people with money to spend (gay people have more discretionary income than almost any other group) who buy from you. Most families have a gay family member and some even love them. I hope you can see what an ‘anti-business’ move it was (at least for you) to support those who hate gay people and want to oppress them.

    In case it is of interest to you I am a devout Christian so don’t assume your only criticism comes from the gay community and/or people who are not deeply religious. Bigotry has no place in today’s world and I, for one, will not tolerate it in any form. We are either “one” or we are nothing. Support diversity and stop financially supporting those who don’t.

    Please clarify your ethics statement if you continue to choose to support homophobic or other types of bigoted candidates so that your customers will know about it …Please add the following for clarification of your corporate identity…

    “Target doesn’t allow discrimination in any form. However, Target will lend significant financial support to those who do, whether they are racists or some other type of bigot, simply because they call themselves ‘pro-business.’ Target will not take responsibility for our actions in any concrete manner and will use awards given to us for simply not persecuting or LBGT staff members as ‘proof’ that we really are good folks after all… (so please keep spending your money here so we can keep supporting America’s own special homegrown Taliban… the ultra-right religious fundamentalists.”

    Kathleen M. Lake, M.A.

  22. More interesting news about MNForward, the PAC that donated to Tom Emmer. The PAC was formed by Target, Best Buy, Pentair and three other companies. These people ELECTED to fund the only bigot on the ballot (there were 4 candidates to choose from). They “say” it was because Emmer calls himself “pro-business,” but upon further checking it turns out that the CEO of Target not only donates to gay-hating causes, he sent his daughter to a college that expels anyone found to be gay and to a program that teaches “corrective therapy” for gay people. It’s really not that much of a stretch to see that Target’s CEO found Emmer’s homophobia and ties to “You Can Run” a hate-group that advocates the murder of gay people, as a nice, cozy, side benefit to the selection of the bigot Emmer. It just gets uglier and uglier. Don’t fund hate. Boycott Target and Best Buy.

  23. Wow…next you guys will be clamoring for some KFC’s.

    Here on Kent East Hill, we have Target and Wal*Mart.

    Amazing right.

    Welcome to the 21st century.

    By the way…build some parking lots…it makes it easier to transport that armchair and lamp back from the store.