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White Center neighborhood

Texto en español.

This unincorporated King County neighborhood on the south edge of West Seattle, is a multicultural hub that tells the story of immigrants and refugees who joined local blue-collar workers in the search for affordable housing and a place to call home.

The neighborhood sprung from logged lands and small farms of European settlers. As industrial operations were established along the Duwamish River during the first half of the 20th century, farmers subdivided their land and made way for housing developments, especially during the 1940s and post-World War II. Federal housing projects were built for immigrants and working-class families who came to the area as wartime workers. Once the war ended, many were able to purchase property cementing White Center’s multilingual multicultural identity.

Latino families were among those who came to White Center and the Seattle area for work. They settled down in White Center and nearby neighborhoods as houses became affordable. Before long, Latino owned businesses started appearing in the heart of the commercial district around the intersection of Roxbury Street and 16th Avenue SW.  Today, this diverse community is home to multiple Latino businesses like traditional dress shops and popular eateries.


2018 image of storefront along 16th Ave SW in White Center

2018 image of storefront along 16th Ave SW in White Center