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Guide to the Archives of the City of Seattle

Record Group 2000
Department of Design, Construction and Land Use

The mission of the Department of Design, Construction and Land Use was to protect the public's health, safety, and welfare through enforcement of land use, housing, and construction codes and standards. Department responsibilities include code development, inspection of new construction, code enforcement, and review of development applications. DCLU programs are funded primarily through a variety of permit fees. The Department of Construction and Land Use was formed in 1980 by merging the Code Enforcement, Housing Conservation, and Administrative Services divisions of the Building Department with the Department of Community Development's Technical Review Section. This consolidated land use administration in one department. The Department name was changed to Design, Construction and Land Use in 1998 to reflect an effort to increase the visibility of good design in the built environment. The Building Department, DCLU's predecessor agency, was created in 1910 to administer public buildings and enforce City construction codes. The Department was responsible for issuing all building permits for construction within the City limits.

Superintendent of Buildings Correspondence

0.2 cubic foot

Correspondence and memoranda related to building inspections, the permit process, building codes, and departmental policies and procedures. The bulk of correspondence dates from 1915-1922; also included is material from the department's structural engineer dated 1919-1935.


DPDInfo (Newsletter)

0.6 cubic foot

Customer newsletter from the Department of Planning and Development with updates on planning, permits, and zoning. From 1985-2002 the publication was titled "DCLUInfo." In 2010, it began being published in electronic format only.


Client Assistance Memos

1.4 cubic foot

Publication for DPD customers explaining various issues of code compliance and permitting. Arranged by category.


Miscellaneous Publications

0.2 cubic foot

Various newsletters and brochures published by the department.

Folder List

Planning Division Digital Photographs

7 digital image files

Collection documents environmental protection and conservation efforts made by Department of Planning and Development to protect trees and plant life. Images include saved trees and tree protection fences, decorative public art, and sidewalk vegetation.

2001-01 in Photograph Index
Finding Aid

Land Use Policy Division Digital Photographs

29 digital image files

Content includes group and individual portraits of the Department of Planning and Development's "Green Team" as well as scenic shoreline images.

2001-02 in Photograph Index

Land Use Information Service (Newsletter)

2.2 cubic feet

Land Use Information Service is a twice weekly bulletin listing land use applications, decisions of the director of DCLU, notices of hearings and appeals, and other land use actions.


Baist's Real Estate Atlas

1 volume

Real estate map of Seattle includes 33 plates with scale of 100 feet to an inch and 200 feet to an inch. Information includes lot dimensions, short legal descriptions, color coded building composition, width of streets and alleys, and location of sewers, water mains, fire hydrants, railway lines, and section lines. Corrected to 1910 with an index to additions and subdivisions.


Plat Books

7 volumes

Blueprint copies of plats from King County recordings, reproduced specifically for the Seattle Building Department. This is an incomplete run, consisting of volumes 1, 2, 4, 6, 9, 10, and 30-31. Includes drawing of plat and certification of filing. Each volume contains an index.

Volume List

Building Permits Index to Named Streets

2 volumes

Permit indexes to named streets, including street name, permit number, and street address. Arranged alphabetically by street and then numerically by permit number.


Architectural Drawings

40.0 cubic feet

Architectural drawings of commercial buildings in Seattle. Includes drawings of public buildings, hospitals, schools, churches, and significant retail and manufacturing establishments. These are permit and design change drawings.


Pioneer Square Historic District Manager's Records

2.0 cubic feet

Correspondence, reports, and reference copies of legislation relating to the administration of the Pioneer Square Historic District. These are records generated while Arthur Skolnik was district manager.

Container List