Monday, April 5, 2010

Another tenant says ‘enough is enough’

If you wandered down to the “Village” over the weekend you may have noticed that there’s suddenly another retail vacancy in the heart of the business district. At the end of last month Maison Michel at Madison Park decamped from its long-time space at 4118 E. Madison Street, leaving Spa Jolie as the only remaining tenant in that once-charming, now-notorious building.

As we reported last summer, building owner Constance Gillespie is known for her eccentricity, her hard bargaining with tenants, and her unwillingness to spend money on the rapidly-deteriorating structure. It was this last point that apparently caused the rift with the owner of the now-departed antique and fine furnishings store. Though I didn’t get a return call from Maison Michel principal Michael Schoonmaker regarding this story, I am told that he finally could take no more and decided to move to another location in Madison Park (around the corner on 43rd Avenue E.)

So while the move is not a retail loss to the neighborhood, having another unoccupied storefront on the main drag is certainly not a plus for the merchants of Madison Park. And this is hardly likely to be a temporary situation. The building’s central unit has been vacant for years; and based on appearance, the building is clearly in an advancing state of decline.

I recently came across a a shopping website on which Madison Park was referred to as having a “quaint” retail district. It looks we just got a bit quainter.


  1. Bryan, is there some way to contact building owner Constance Gillespie? She is not being responsible, and I'd like to contact her and say so for the sake of our neighborhood. Perhaps a petition could be signed by concerned neighbors and given to her? Ed

  2. aren't there building inspectors in Seattle? that building looks unsafe.

  3. Thanks for the Brian -- I have heard rumors about the management of this building. It is so sad to see the empty storefronts.


Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.