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Seattle's City Halls


City Hall sign
City Hall sign

City government in Seattle has occupied many different spaces throughout its history. Seattle’s City Halls have been located above a fire engine house, in a patchwork building dubbed the “Castle,” in leased spaces, and, for the last 40 years of the 20th century, in its own nondescript blue and grey municipal building.

Over the years, numerous reports and studies have been issued regarding civic space for Seattle. Suggestions for how to craft City government space have been made by city employees, citizens, and mayors; and the quest for a new City Hall was realized when a new uniquely Seattle-style City Hall opened for business in 2003.

"A city hall is unique. It is not like a museum or a library. It is a place where busy people work, where busy, often harassed people go to do business. Serving these people is its basic function."
Councilman J. D. Braman 1962

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