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Curbed Cup 1st round: (5) Capitol Hill vs. (12) Georgetown

Which neighborhood should advance? Cast your vote now!


Capitol Hill

Capitol Hill is one of Seattle’s densest neighborhoods, packed with not only apartments, but some of the city’s most popular arts and nightlife destinations. Despite the neighborhood taking on a lot of the city’s rapid change, many longtime residents maintain that Capitol Hill keeps a culture all its own.

“We are the neighborhood that accepts and shapes the change naturally happening here,” Capitol Hill Community Council board member and newly elected school board member Zachary DeWolf while nominating the neighborhood. “We are the neighborhood that puts our neighbors first—no matter their story—because each and every one of us are neighbors.”

DeWolf elaborated: “We’re prioritizing our neighbors experiencing homelessness by having these critical conversations from compassion and actionable ways to help, we’re prioritizing our neighbors with addiction [and] substance use issues by communicating that harm reduction works and we want a supervised consumption site, and we’re prioritizing our neighbors who rent by making sure their voices are heard at city hall and to the [broader] community.”

It’s also important to remember that Capitol Hill isn’t just Pike and Pine. The Urbanist’s senior editor Ryan Packer wrote in not to boost Capitol Hill as a whole, but one specific pocket: Summit Slope.

“We eschew but ultimately submit to the overall Capitol Hill label, but much like Crown Hill is ultimately labelled Ballard, we are an undeniably unique subset of the overall ‘thing’ that is [increasingly called Cap Hill,” said Packer. He said the area “presents a unique identity of urban living,” and feature not only some of the city’s most iconic rental buildings—including the Biltmore—but also the original Top Pot Donuts, the 47 bus, “an awesome bodega with the best beer selection around,” and three parks all their own.

The Hill’s main weakness: Are we over it? The neighborhood made it to the finals in 2011, but wasn’t even seeded in 2016. But with the neighborhood’s community activism at the forefront of many of 2017’s headlines—including the formation of the Renters Commission—it could be in for a renaissance.


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While some view Capitol Hill as eschewing everything that made it weird, Georgetown has kept a vice grip on its identity—confident, artistic, and a little rough around the edges. Its neighborhood traditions run deep and strong, towering over the area like a tall bike, including the annual Georgetown Carnival, the monthly Georgetown Art Attack, and the weekly Georgetown Trailer Park Mall.

While, like everywhere, Georgetown has seem some change and development, most businesses in Georgetown seem like institutions: Between Smarty Pants and Georgetown Liquor Company, they have some of the best sandwiches in town. Jules Maes is perhaps Seattle’s oldest bar, no matter when you’re counting from, and Seattle just doesn’t make dives like 9 Lb Hammer anymore.

Despite having a whole lot to brag about, Georgetown is one of the least pretentious of Seattle’s offbeat neighborhoods. Its residents are too busy making stuff—like turning an abandoned gas station into a park and art gallery—to play gatekeeper.

Georgetown made it to the finals in 2014, facing off against Columbia City. It didn’t advance past the first round in 2016, though. Do they have what it takes to make the Elite 8 this year?

Which neighborhood should advance this week? This poll closes Wednesday, December 13 at 12:30 p.m., so get those votes in. (Not seeing the poll? Try exiting Apple News or Google Amp.)