Starbucks Center

The Starbucks Center (formerly the SODO Center)[1] is the world headquarters for coffeehouse chain Starbucks, and the largest multi-tenant building by floor space in Seattle,[2] with over 2.2 million square feet (200,000 m2). It is located in Seattle's SoDo neighborhood, which makes up a part of the city's large industrial district. It is both the largest and oldest building in the country to earn a national green certification.[3]

Starbucks Center
Starbucks Headquarters Seattle.jpg
Former namesSears, Roebuck and Co. Building
SODO Center
General information
Locationcor. 1st Avenue South & South Lander Street
Address2401 Utah Avenue South
Town or citySeattle, Washington
Coordinates47°34′51″N 122°20′10″W / 47.5807°N 122.3360°W / 47.5807; -122.3360
Current tenantsStarbucks
US Bank
SODO Kitchen
AmazonFresh Pickup
Technical details
Floor area1,800,000 sq ft (170,000 m2)

Coordinates: 47°34′52″N 122°20′08″W / 47.5809906°N 122.3354864°W / 47.5809906; -122.3354864

Aerial view of Starbucks Center from front


In 1912, the building was constructed by the Union Pacific Railroad in a successful attempt to lure Sears, Roebuck and Co. to Seattle.[4] The building was used to fulfill the Sears Catalog in the Western United States. Sears opened their retail store at this location in 1925. According to the owner, this was the world's oldest continuously operated Sears store.[4] (though the Sears store on Lawrence Ave in Chicago opened in the same year and operated until 2016).

The building was repeatedly expanded throughout the twentieth century. After the Sears catalog business was closed, the building was sold in 1990, and eventually redeveloped as the SoDo Center. Starbucks began moving some administrative offices to the old Sears building in 1993.[5] On June 20, 1997, Starbucks moved their headquarters to the SoDo Center, became the building's primary tenant, and secured the naming rights.[6][7][8] Accordingly, the building's name was duly changed from the SoDo Center to the Starbucks Center.[7] The building underwent significant renovation following severe damage suffered in the 2001 Nisqually earthquake. The Sears department store closed down in June 2014 along with its nearby Sears Auto Center. In the first quarter of 2017 AmazonFresh's newest service, AmazonFresh Pickup began operating out of the location.[9][10]


  1. ^ "Starbucks Coffee Co. and Nitze-Stagen Complete Major Renovation: Former SODO Center Renamed Starbucks Center" (Press release). Starbucks, Inc. June 16, 1997. Retrieved September 5, 2016 – via PR Newswire.
  2. ^ "Quake-hit Starbucks Center returns". Seattle Post-Intelligencer. 2002-09-20.
  3. ^ "Seattle's Starbucks Center earns national green certification". Seattle Post-Intelligencer. 2007-11-01.
  4. ^ a b Starbucks Center property information, Nize-Stagen, retrieved 2010-04-11
  5. ^ Paysha Stockton (October 1, 2000). "Heralding the New Seattle". Seattle Times. Retrieved 2014-06-14.
  6. ^ Barbara Schechter (October 10, 1995). "Starbucks Expanding Its Sodo Center Headquarters". Seattle Times. Retrieved 2014-06-14.
  7. ^ a b Lee Moriwaki (June 7, 1997). "Old Sears Named Starbucks Headquarters -- Sodo Building Will Be Renamed, Renovated". Seattle Times. Retrieved 2014-06-14.
  8. ^ Lee Moriwaki (June 21, 1997). "Starbucks, Developer Help Boost Sodo Area -- `South Of Dome' Gets Makeover To Become `South Of Downtown'". Seattle Times. Retrieved October 1, 2016.
  9. ^ González, Angel (2014-02-22). "Sears closing store, ending a century in Sodo building". The Seattle Times. Retrieved 2017-08-01.
  10. ^ González, Ángel (2017-03-28). "Amazon tries to bag a big chunk of grocery market with Seattle pickup locations". The Seattle Times. Retrieved 2017-08-01.