Legacy Business Program

The City of Seattle is committed to supporting a strong and resilient economy that generates economic opportunity and prosperity for all of Seattle's diverse communities. Small, long-tenured businesses also known as legacy businesses are an important part of this vision. Over the past ten years, the city has seen significant increases in population and employment. Amid this tremendous and unprecedented change, many residents and community leaders have expressed a sense of loss at the closing of longtime businesses challenged under new local and global economic realities.

To address commercial displacement and preserve the neighborhoods that Seattle residents cherish, the City's Office of Economic Development (OED) has developed the Legacy Business pilot program that provides specialized support for long-standing, culturally relevant Seattle small businesses.

In order to be considered for the Legacy Business Program, a business must meet the following criteria:

  • Independently owned, for-profit business,
  • Minimum of ten years of continuous operation in Seattle,
  • Fewer than 50 employees, including the owner(s)

To be selected, businesses must also contribute to the ground-level streetscape and/or neighborhood identity, serve a community function above and beyond the basic sale of goods and services, and face a significant risk of displacement. Learn more about the program through our FAQ page.




Do you know of a business that meets this criteria? Nominate them as a Legacy Business! Qualifying businesses will be notified of their nomination and invited to apply. Only businesses that apply for the award will be considered. Please note, selection is not based on number of nominations for a business.   

Nominate a Business   

Are you a business owner that meets the criteria for a Legacy Business? Apply for the award below!

Apply as a business  

Nominations close February 14, 2020, applications due February 28, 2020.

Questions? Contact Michael Wells, Small Business Advocate, at Michael.Wells@seattle.gov