Down Under

Level 4, top of stairs near Market Coins

Level 4, top of stairs near Market Coins

Walk down the ramp, and north through the building, and up to the 4th floor stairs, near the Market Coin Shop.

Meanwhile, the Goodwins had been slowly creating more space for farm stalls along the western slope leading down from Pike Place. In 1911, two additional floors were constructed below the Pike Place level of the Leland Hotel, three floors added below the Fairley Building. The spaces created with these projects were used primarily by retail food merchants. The Down Under was more or less finished in 1914 as a 240-foot long, six-story addition snaking down to Western Avenue. This spare, utilitarian design created about 100 shop spaces. Farm tables and additional restrooms were added at a lower mezzanine level next to a cave-like office, barely large enough for two desks and two chairs, that Frank Goodwin would use to run Market affairs from 1914 until his nephew Arthur took over the Company and moved his office to the far-more-dramatic second floor of the Economy Market.

During a period of controversy in 1921-22 over the use of Pike Place for the sale of farm produce, additional farm stalls were added in the Down Under. During this same period, a second six-story addition was made to the Fairley Building, which connected the north end of the Down Under to the North Arcade, then being improved as part of a new Municipal Market Building on Western Avenue. Throughout the Down Under, the austere, utilitarian aesthetic of Frank Goodwin’s time running the Market can still be seen in the rough-hewn painted wooden pillars anchoring the building to the hillside.

Restaurants, a creamery, a butcher shop and a grain market and a printing press were housed in this new addition. The lowest two floor levels included refrigerated storage, and fruit and grain warehouse space. In 1922, the Seattle Public Library opened a branch in a former groceteria next to a donut shop and above a lard-rendering plant in one of the basements, which quickly became the city’s most active branch, although it would close down during the Great Depression. The Down Under would later be home to the original location of DeLaurenti’s, Liberty Malt Shop, a Goodwill, and rummage shops. Today the second floor is home to the Market’s pre-school.

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