Monday, May 23, 2011

The University District

Yesterday's University Street Fair attracted my husband and me so we took a 6.3 mile walk in the University District.

We started at Ravenna Park one block south of Candy Cane Lane and walked down 21st Avenue NE.

This is a very hilly section and, at 52nd Street, two staircases connect the avenues.

As we walked along NE 45th Street, we could look across and see the UW campus and the Burke Museum.

Along 15th, we saw a proposed land use action sign which noted that seven houses would be demolished and replaced with commercial property up to 65 feet high.

The fair was along "the Ave" (University Way NE) from NE 41st to 50th Street and spread down the streets perpendicular to the Ave.

The fair appeared to be well attended with entertainment and the food booths appearing to be attracting more spectators and doing more business than the crafts booths. I was hoping to see something new and exciting but most of the merchandise looked like things I'd seen many times before.

The Ave is the commercial hub of the U District and I was amazed at how many of the businesses which were here when I worked on the Ave years ago were still operating (including Cafe Allegro which advertises itself as Seattle's oldest coffee house - it opened in 1975). Yesterday, most of these businesses were hidden behind the street fair booths.

This neighborhood just north of the University of Washington is home to many Fraternity and Sorority houses and churches:

University Lutheran Church which appears to share space with New Covenant Baptist Church,

Some of the Fraternity and Sorority houses look like old brick mansions and appear quite nice from the outside.

At 19th and 47th, we saw a tree loaded with shoes.

Even though this neighborhood appears to be more about buildings than gardens, 17th Avenue NE is an elegant, tree-lined street with a beautiful median strip.

The U District has lots of restaurants and can be a lively place to visit but, not being a college student, I wouldn't really want to live here. That said, we had a pleasant walk.

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