While more residential units is a near-universal good in downtown Seattle, the Showbox is one of the best venues in the city, and its loss is a tragedy.




The cultural value and history of the Showbox is irreplaceable. I'm so grateful for the uncountable amazing experiences I got to share there with so many great coworkers, friends, fans, and artists.


this is a bad idea,

is it a different project than the one that's demolishing the green tortoise hostel?


Awful awul bullshit. AEG better be lawyering up and fighting this shit. They had a 99 year lease on this space...contract is being broken somewhere, and I don't think they were aware of the development until this article dropped.




This building is older than 50 years old, so by default it will have to go through Landmarks review. If you care about this building show up when the public review happens!


So many great times there throughout the years.... wonderful memories. Fucking sad.


Please keep us updated about the fate of this building, Sean. I know you don't like to read the bottom half of the internet (and I can't blame you for that), but as other commenters have pointed out, there are a lot of hurdles in the way of this company's plan becoming a reality: AEG has a 99 year lease on use of the space (I dislike them, but a contract is a contract); the building is more than 50 years old, so it will have to go through a landmark review process per municipal guidelines before demolition can be approved; the venue itself is a popular location and thus this move is likely to see a lot of pushback from locals who enjoy or enjoyed being there.

In all this rash of construction and development of "mixed use" metropolitan spaces, people seem to have missed something very important: none of the New Growth in our dear city is in the form of arts and performance spaces. Those places are, increasingly, springing out of otherwise disused buildings that were once utilized for other purposes (see: the old Immigration building becoming an artist residency experiment, the clothing store that became a dance rehearsal and performance space, etc.). New theaters aren't being built, and neither are new spaces that otherwise get used for traditional forms of live entertainment (or if they are, they're in the capture of shitty companies like AEG who underpay their local crew to an insulting degree). The continued dissolution of this city's art and performance spaces is a thus-far irreplaceable loss for us all, and we will all be culturally poorer for their disappearance.


We'll always have Jeff's balls, I guess.


The irony is soon "the historic city of Seattle" will be an average of about ten years old. Can you imagine if Europe did this? Hard to have cool old sites if they are constantly bulldozed.


Ugh... I hate this.
There is a pretty good historical preservation case to be made.


To be fair, Europe did some pretty hefty renovating between 1914 and 1918 and then re-did it all again between 1935 and 1945.


This is a disaster


The Stanger greased the wheels of the Showbox demise with a decade of equity washing development issues. Turns out loosening land use law DOESN’T magically result in the promised affordable housing. It just results in $$$$ profits for developers. Who knew developers weren’t our saviors? (Hint: everyone. Everyone f*cking knew.) Maybe when all of us musicians and artists and progressives are finally pushed out of the city and replaced with tech drones who don’t give two shits about a local music rag that purports to be liberal but somehow trumpets an exclusively neolib agenda, The Stranger will finally recognize the error of its ways. The Emerald City that launched a thousand bands has VANISHED. Enjoy your corporate hellscape. You’ve earned it.


While I feel badly about the Showbox demise, they have got to have the rudest staff I've ever met. At least in the Seattle music scene. Secret service detail are much nicer. Not gonna cry tears when these people lose their jobs.


Clickbait. The developers said the want to build something there. There are no permits, no demolition plans no nothing at this point besides a statement. It will have to go through the landmark process and that's going to take a while.


AEG is the Anschutz Entertainment Group. Phil Anschutz is absolutely ruthless (seriously, he's like an old-timey rail baron. He even owns a big chunk of Union Pacific), but I don't know if he'd go to bat for something as small as the Showbox, especially if they buy his lease out.


@16 for the win!

Where is Dominic these days, anyway? I hope he’s enjoying his new life in Brooklyn! New Brooklyn and new Seattle are a lot alike!! Super expensive, lots of displacement, lots of shiny glass where interesting people and businesses used to be. I wonder if that could possibly be because of the large scale urban redevelopment pursues in both places?!? Nah, probs just a coincidence.

Anyway, yeah, cities change. Everything always changes. The question is, are they changing for the better or the worse. And how? I don’t miss Dominic’s full court press for the redevelopment of Capitol Hill, and I don’t think the neighborhood is better for it. I do miss his writing though. What a great writer!

And I will miss the Showbox if it goes away.


@21: Yes, the HALA Koolaid drinking YIMBY's at the Stranger like to call new luxury apartments "progress." But progress is supposed to mean BETTER.


@8 K1234: Yes--shouldn't The Showbox be registered among historic landmarks?
Seriously, folks, Seattle does NOT "have" to regress into a corporate concrete jungle hellscape.

Please wait...

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