Pioneer Square is a neighborhood located at the Southwest corner of Downtown Seattle, and in 1852 it was the heart of the city and original downtown. Much of this neighborhood is a registered historical site, and the Romanesque Revival urban architecture and brick buildings undoubtedly add to the reminiscent vibes of the early settlements in the 1850’s. The Great Seattle Fire of 1889 burned large parts of this area and its wooden establishments, but the neighborhood was quickly rebuilt, literally atop the affected area. A popular attraction is Bill Speidel’s Underground Tour, which is an amazing and historical trip through the “buried” Pioneer Square where visitors walk beneath the sidewalks and current buildings to see the old storefronts destroyed by the fire.
Pioneer Square is close to Safeco and Qwest Fields, on many bus lines, and now hosts a variety of restaurants, pubs, sports bars, art galleries, bookstores, and cafes. Established as both a National historic district and a local preservation district in 1970, Pioneer Square is protected by an ordinance and design guidelines focused on preserving its unique historic and architectural character, assuring the sensitive rehabilitation of buildings, promoting development of residential uses for all income levels, and enhancing the district’s economic climate for residents, employers, workers, and visitors.