Pike Place Market Litigation Records, 1970-1991

Overview of the Collection

Seattle (Wash.). Law Dept.
Pike Place Market Litigation Records
1970-1991 (inclusive)
1990-1991 (bulk)
8.4 cubic feet, (9 boxes)
35 digital files, (1.3 gb)
Collection Number
Records from litigation over legal title to eleven historic buildings in Pike Place Market.
Seattle Municipal Archives
Seattle Municipal Archives
Office of the City Clerk
City of Seattle
PO Box 94728
Seattle, WA
Telephone: 2062337807
Fax: 2063869025
Access Restrictions

Records are open to the public.


Historical NoteReturn to Top

The Law Department represents the City in all legal matters and litigation, provides legal advice and opinions to City departments and agencies, and is responsible for prosecuting violations of City ordinances in Municipal Court. The position of City Attorney was established in 1875. The 1890 City Charter created the Law Department headed by the Corporation Counsel. The title was changed to City Attorney in 1977.

Content DescriptionReturn to Top

In the early 1980s, the New York-based company Urban Group acquired legal title to eleven historic buildings in Pike Place Market. The deal - a complex sale of tax depreciation rights - was to serve as a tax shelter for the company while providing $3 million for renovating the market. In 1989, after federal legislation eliminated the tax breaks, the Urban Group proposed rental increases for market tenants and demanded millions of dollars in back earnings. A public outcry ensued, and a Citizens Alliance was formed to fight the company. The City's Law Department also got involved, and numerous suits and countersuits were filed. The Urban Group eventually filed for bankruptcy and agreed to a buyout, returning ownership of the buildings back the public.

Records in this series document the litigation, including legal filings and background materials about the market. The files have been scanned and are available in Digital Collections. An index, also scanned, lists most of the documents in the boxes, and folder titles include the corresponding section of the index.

Other Descriptive InformationReturn to Top

Use of the CollectionReturn to Top

Preferred Citation

[Item and date], Pike Place Market Litigation Records, Record Series 4402-05. Box [number], Folder [number]. Seattle Municipal Archives.

Administrative InformationReturn to Top

Detailed Description of the CollectionReturn to Top

Container(s) Description Dates
Box Folder
1 1 Temporary Restraining Order (A.1) 1989-1990
1 2 Discovery (A.2) 1990
1 3 Protective Order (A.3) 1990
1 4 Motion for Partial Summary Judgment (A.4) 1990
1 5 Motion for Partial Summary Judgment (A.5) 1990
1 6 Plaintiff's Responses (A.6) 1990
2 1 Kim Sayles Deposition (B.1) 1990
2 2 Kim Sayles Deposition Exhibits (B.2) 1990
2 3 Depositions (B.3-7) 1990
2 4 Documents for Ernest Michael Deposition (B.8) 1979-1990
3 1 Pleadings (C.1) 1990
3 2 Temporary Restraining Order (C.2-3) 1990
3 3 Motion for Receiver (C.4-5) 1990
3 4 Pleadings (C.6) 1990
4 1 Motion to Dismiss (D.1) 1990
4 2 Motion to Dismiss (D.2) 1990
4 3 Motions (D.3-5) 1990-1991
4 4 Affidavits, Findings of Fact, etc. (D.6-11) 1991
5 1 Urban Group Bankruptcy (E.1) 1991
5 2 Urban Group Bankruptcy (E.2) 1991
5 3 Urban Investors Bankruptcy (E.3) 1991
5 4 Deposition and Index of Exhibits (E.4-6) 1991
5 5 Misc. reports, media, background, bankruptcy (not in index) 1974-1990
6 1 Urban Group Bankruptcy Statements and Schedules (F.1) 1991
6 2 Urban Group Bankruptcy Motions (F.2) 1991
6 3 Urban Group Bankruptcy Draft Settlement (G.1) 1991
6 4 Settlement Documents (G.2-3) 1991
6 5 Pike Place Market Ordinance and Guidelines Revisions (H.1) 1970-1990
6 6 Sanitary Market Syndication Documents (H.2) 1980-1981
6 7 Pike Place Market Syndication Documents (H.3) 1983-1986
6 8 Corner Market Syndication Documents (H.4) 1983-1986
6 9 Stewart House Syndication Documents (H.5) 1981-1989
6 10 Cliffhouse Syndication Documents (H.6) 1980
7 1 Pike Place Market Background Materials (I.1) 1973-1990
7 2 Legal Opinions (I.2) 1972-1985
7 3 Contracts and Deeds (I.3) 1976-1981

Names and SubjectsReturn to Top

Subject Terms

  • Historic preservation--Washington (State)--Seattle
  • Litigation--Washington (State)--Seattle
  • Pike Place Market (Seattle, Wash.)

Corporate Names

  • Pike Place Market Preservation & Development Authority (Seattle, Wash.)