Capitol Hill’s Pike/Pine Corridor Named as One of Nation’s Top 12 Art Places

Seattle Mayor Mike McGinn.

Seattle Mayor Mike McGinn. Photo by Robert Wade.

Seattle Mayor Mike McGinn, community leaders and national arts champions gathered last week to celebrate a recent report that named Seattle’s Pike-Pine corridor as one of America’s Top Twelve ArtPlaces for 2013.

When you stop to think about all of the creative, vibrant communities across this big country of ours, to be selected as one of the top 12 is worth taking a moment to celebrate! We’re in good company too, sharing the status with neighborhoods in Manhattan, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Miami, Brooklyn, Washington D.C., Philadelphia, Portland, Milwaukee, Oakland and Dallas.

The study by ArtPlace America measured the factors that result in the most successful combination of art, artists, independent businesses, retail and restaurants, and walkability, to create dynamic and engaging places.

Velocity Dance Center

Velocity Dance Center, a neighborhood catalyst. Photo by Robert Wade.

When I travel, I know how much I like to discover a neighborhood that has a strong sense of place, that offers a number of discoveries in an accessible area, and has its own unique character.  That’s one of the reasons I usually recommend exploring the Pike-Pine corridor in Seattle’s Capitol Hill neighborhood to Seattle visitors, since it offers exactly that.  Highlights of the ArtPlace report include that 89% of businesses are independent, and the area boasts a high walkablility score of 97.

Elliott Bay Books, by Joe Mabel, CC-BY-SA-3.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

Elliott Bay Book Company interior, by Joe Mabel

What’s to discover? Some of my favorite spots include Elliott Bay Books, NuBe Green, Everyday Music, Melrose Market, Northwest Film Forum, Velocity Dance Center, Century Ballroom, Oddfellows,  Caffe Vita, The Comet Tavern, Balagan Theatre, Molly Moon’s, Richard Hugo House, Retrofit, Tango, Rumba, The Project Room, Osteria La Spiga and Quinn’s.  But each time I visit the neighborhood I find something new and interesting. Two great resources are the newly printed Pike Pine Independent Pocket Retail Map, available in the neighborhood and in our Seattle Visitor Center at 7th & Pike,  and Come, explore, get inspired and find your own favorites!

Northwest Film Forum, by Elisa Huerta-Enochian

Northwest Film Forum, by Elisa Huerta-Enochian










And for those that are interested, you can see the full list and get more information on the ArtPlace America website.


About the Author

Tracey Wickersham

Tracey Wickersham is the Director of Cultural Tourism at Visit Seattle. In her off hours she’s the host of a weekly music program on KBCS 91.3 FM and a board member at 4Culture, supporting arts, heritage, public art and historic preservation in King County. She lives in West Seattle with her husband, one headstrong elderly Australian Cattle Dog, heaps of books and music, and an unwieldy garden.

Tracey Wickersham


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