As the largest city in the Pacific Northwest, Seattle is known as both "The Emerald City," the "Rainy City," and has been made famous because of Starbucks Coffee and nearby technology business Microsoft Corporation. It's location, between Lake Washington and the Puget Sound, and close proximity to Mount Rainier National Park, make it the perfect destination for those who want the benefit of the ocean and the mountains while enjoying the excitement and variety of a large city atmosphere.


Country: United States
State: Washington

Latitude: 47° 39' North
Longitude: 122° 17' West
Elevation: 513

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Land Area: 84 sq mi (217 sq km)
Parks: Over 100



Seattle's mild winters and temperate summers enable year-round outdoor activities. High temperatures in July average about 75° F (24° C), while low temperatures in winter drop below freezing an average of only 15 days per year. Average yearly rainfall in Seattle is 36.2 inches (92 cm), compared to 19.5 inches (50 cm) in San Francisco, 34.5 (88 cm) in Chicago, 39 inches (99 cm) in Washington, DC and 40.3 inches (102 cm) in New York City.

Average January High Temperature 77.60°F
Average January Low Temperature 62.20°F
Average July High Temperature 92.20°F
Average July Low Temperature 78.50°F
Annual Precipitation 66.04
Earthquake Risk 13
Weather Risk View 451
Air Pollution Index View 85



Population, 2007: 586,200
Population density: 6,979 people per sq mi (2,701 per sq km)
Male 24,364
Female 24,552



White 43,522
African American 3,967
Hispanic 45,277
Native American, Eskimo, Aleut 81
Asian / Pacific Islander 112
Hawaiian / Pacific Islander 30
Other 3,215


Income and Jobs

Median Household Income $27,865
Average household Income $36,732
Per capita income $13,018
Median Disposable Income $25,253
Average Total Household Expenditure View $35,880
Sales Tax Rate 7.00%
White Collar Jobs View 73.02%
Blue Collar Jobs View 26.98%



Average Home Sale Price $192,500
Homes Owned 5,632
Homes Rented 10,302
Vacant Homes 1,246
Median Dwelling Age 35 years
Median Years in Residence 2.00
Annual Residential Turnover 23.00%
Median Travel Time to Work 22.21
Transportation to Work: Public 5.00%
Transportation to Work: Drive / Carpool 89.00%
Transportation to Work: Walk / Bike / Other 5.00%
Transportation to Work: Work at Home 2.00%
Recycling Likelihood Index 119



Total Crime Risk 112
Personal Crime Risk 119
Property Crime Risk 122



Less than 9th Grade 8,421
Some High School 4,704
High School Graduate 10,399
Some College 3,269
Associate Degree 2,136
Bachelors Degree 3,860
Graduate Degree 2,157

Major Universities and Colleges

University of Washington (public) 45 380 students
Seattle Community Colleges (public) 39 601 students
Seattle University (private) 4 253 students
Seattle Pacific University (private) 3842 students
Art Institute of Seattle (private) 2,561 students


Health Care

The Seattle area is the health care center of the US Pacific Northwest. Leading institutions include Swedish Medical Center, University of Washington Hospital and School of Medicine, Harborview Medical Center, Group Health Cooperative Hospital, Virginia Mason Medical Center, Northwest Hospital, Valley General Hospital, Children's Hospital and the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center (with the world's largest research program for cancer control and prevention).



All major religions are represented in the greater Seattle area. In addition to various Protestant, Roman Catholic and Eastern Orthodox churches, there are numerous Jewish synagogues, Buddhist temples and Islamic mosques.


Cultural Facilities

Historical sites 37
Performing arts centers 37
Public libraries 30
Community centers 28
Museums 17


Recreational Facilities

Tennis courts 156
Maintained trails - 72 miles
Parks 61 local parks
Athletic clubs 42
Playing fields 33
Swimming pools 10
Beaches 9
Golf courses 5



1980 386 684
1990 469 802
2000 536 471
2006 470 698
2020 (projection) 653,514



There are 11,890 hotel rooms in downtown Seattle's central business district and over 32,000 hotel rooms in the Seattle/King County area. In 2008 and 2009, some 1,500 new guestrooms are expected to open. See or call (800) 535-7071 for information or reservations at nearly 90 Seattle area hotels



Cuisine in the Seattle area is famous for fresh seafood, local farm produce, and other Northwest specialties. A wide variety of ethnic restaurants are among the more than 9,000 restaurants in Greater Seattle.


Major Attractions

Among the most popular urban attractions are the Seattle Center and the Space Needle, Pike Place Market, the Hiram Chittenden Locks, Woodland Park Zoo, Tillicum Indian Village, Seattle Aquarium, waterfront, lakeside and sound beaches, Pioneer Square, International District, and local wineries and breweries. Outdoor activities include boating, fishing, golf, water sports, hiking, biking, mountain climbing and skiing. Seattle is situated on the shores of Lake Washington, Lake Union and Puget Sound, flanked by two major mountain ranges (Olympics and Cascades), with Mount Rainier in full view and remote wilderness less than an hour away. Nearby are the San Juan Islands, Pacific Ocean beaches and major rivers.


Arts, Culture and Festivals

According to a 2007 study by Washington D.C.-based Americans for the Arts, Seattle ranks within the top 5 American cities for arts and arts-related businesses. The arts scene includes the Seattle Symphony (performing in Benaroya Hall), Seattle Opera and the Pacific Northwest Ballet (performing in Marion Oliver McCaw Hall), numerous art galleries, the Seattle Asian Art Museum, the Experience Music Project rock and roll museum, the Seattle Art Museum and the Olympic Sculpture Park (opened on the Seattle waterfront in January of 2007). Seattle is rich in theater arts with 80 companies, 25 of which are professional. Other festival celebrations include SEAFAIR, Northwest Folklife, Seattle International Film Festival, Bumbershoot Arts Festival, International Children's Theater Festival, the Bite of Seattle food festival and Northwest Bookfest. Seattle hosts large-scale musical concerts and has gained international attention as the place of origin of trend-setting rock, pop and jazz groups. Seattle's Convention & Visitors Bureau offers a comprehensive, searchable calendar of events on its web site for convenient trip planning at


Professional Sports

Seattle is home to Mariners baseball, Seahawks football, Seattle Sounders soccer and the WNBA 2004 World Champion's the Seattle Storm (professional women's basketball).


Sister Cities

With 21 sister cities, Seattle has the second largest sister city program in the US.

Listed with date of establishment:

Kobe, Japan (1957)
Bergen, Norway (1967)
Tashkent, Uzbekistan (1973)
Beer Sheva, Israel (1977)
Mazatlan, Mexico (1979)
Nantes, France (1980)
Christchurch, New Zealand (1981)
Mombasa, Kenya (1981)
Chongqing, China (1983)
Limbe, Cameroon (1984)
Galway, Ireland (1986)
Reykjavik, Iceland (1986)
Daejon (Taejon), Korea (1989)
Kaohsiung, Taiwan (1991)
Pecs, Hungary (1991)
Cebu, Philippines (1991)
Perugia, Italy (1991)
Surabaya, Indonesia (1992)
Gdynia, Poland (1993)
Haiphong, Vietnam (1996)
Sihanoukville, Cambodia (1999)



Railroads and Bus Service

Burlington Northern and Union Pacific provide transcontinental rail service and operate three intermodal yards in Seattle. Passenger service to major US cities is provided by Amtrak. Various bus lines connect Seattle with major cities in the US, Canada, and as far south as Tijuana, Mexico. Seattle is served by a county-wide bus system with a ride-free zone in Seattle's downtown district.

Harbor Facilities

The Port of Seattle is among the top ten container ports in the US, with products valued at $36.7 billion crossing its docks each year. It is served by 29 ocean carriers and three Alaska barge operators, two major transcontinental railroads, and numerous trucking companies that link Seattle to market hubs throughout North America.

Fisherman's Terminal

Fishermen's Terminal serves as the homeport for the US North Pacific fishing fleet and is a growing center for other commercial workboats as well.

Seattle-Tacoma Airport

Seattle-Tacoma International Airport is a major gateway joining Asia and Europe with the US. In 2004, 28.8 million passengers passed through Sea-Tac, as did 346,966 metric tons of air freight. Passenger traffic climbed 7.5% over 2003, and for the first time exceeded pre-9/11 levels. Twenty-eight airlines serve Sea-Tac: 9 of those are foreign flagged and 5 are all-cargo airlines. The airport is 13 miles (21 km) from Seattle's central business district and 14 miles from the Port's marine terminals. In the continental US, Sea-Tac is the closest airport to Asia and is approximately 9 hours by air from either Tokyo or London. There are more than 45 scheduled flights to international destinations each week.


Safety Phones and Major Hospitals

Police/Fire/Ambulance: 911
Harborview Medical Center (206-731-3000)
Children's Hospital and Regional Medical Center (206) 987-2000)
University of Washington Medical Center (206-598-3300)
Northwest Hospital (206-364-0500)
The PolyClinic (206-329-1777)
Swedish Medical Center (206) 215-2222
Virginia Mason Medical Center (206) 223-6600


Industry and Business

Greater Seattle's Top 10 Public Companies
(headquartered in Seattle/Washington State).

Company Revenues Type of Business
Costco 60 151 Membership Warehouses
Microsoft 44 282 Software Development
Washington Mutual 26 284 Bank
Weyerhaeuser 21 896 Pulp/Paper Products
Paccar 16 454 Heavy-Duty Truck Manufacturer 10 711 Online Retailer
Nordstrom 8 560 Apparel Retailer
Starbucks 7 786 Coffee Company
Safeco 6 289 Insurance/Financial Services
Expeditors International of WA 4 625 International Logistics Company



Seattle Times 234,274 (469,853)
Seattle Post-Intelligencer 150,876 (469,853)
The News Tribune (Tacoma) 116,150 (123,213)
Seattle Weekly* 113,000
The Stranger* 95,000
Everett Herald 51,000 (56,000)
The Sun (Bremerton) 31,589 (37,517)
King County Journal 49,000 (49,000)
Puget Sound Business Journal 17,000
Seattle Medium 37,500
International Examiner* 10,000
Korea Central Daily+ 10,000
Korea Times 10,000
La Voz*+ 10,000
Northwest Asian Weekly* 10,000
NW Vietnamese Weekly*+ 10,000
North American Post+ 8,000 (15,000)
Daily Journal of Commerce 5,500
Seattle Chinese Post*+ 5,000
El Mundo*+ 30,000


Television and Radio

All major TV networks have affiliates in Seattle. Cable service is available through Comcast Cablevision and TCI Cablevision.

KSTW-TV 11(The CW)
KCPQ-TV 13 (Fox)
KTZZ-TV 22 (Warner)
Seattle Channel 21 (Municipal channel)

Approximately 45 AM and FM radio stations provide music, news, and features in the Seattle area


Further Information

City of Seattle:

City Directory Assistance 684-2489

Mayor's Office 684-4000

Office of Economic Development 684-8090

Office of Arts & Cultural Affairs 684-7171

Public Library 386-4636

City Light 684-3000

Office of Film and Music 684-0903

Enterprise Seattle 389-8650

Greater Seattle Chamber of Commerce 389-7200


Distances to other Metropolitan Areas

Atlanta, GA        2149
Boston, MA         2456
Chicago, IL        1693
Dallas, TX         1636
Houston, TX        1848
Las Vegas, NV      856
Los Angeles, CA        942
Memphis, TN        1842
Miami, FL          2685
Nashville, TN      1948
New Orleans, LA    2056
New York, NY       2383
Orlando, FL        2517
Philadelphia, PA   2341
Phoenix, AX        1092
Rapid City, SD     942
San Antonio, TX    1750
San Diego, CA      1037
San Jose, CA        689
Washington, DC     2292
Salt Lake City, UT        680


Major Shopping Areas

Pike Place Market
Southcenter Mall
Northgate Mall
Bellevue Square
Redmond Town Center
University Village
Seattle Waterfront
Pacific Place Shopping Center
Great Wall Mall
Prime Outlets at Burlington
Supermall of the Great Northwest
Broadway Market


Interesting Facts

Seattle was named after Noah Sealth, chief of the Duwamish and Susquahamish tribes and was better known as "Chief Seattle." The previous name of the city was "Duwumps."

The Space Needle is Seattle's most recognizable landmark, and was used in the logo for the TV show, "Frar."

The Bank of America Tower is the 4th tallest skyscraper west of the Mississippi, and the 12th tallest in the nation. In the attacks planned for 9/11, this building was one of the 10 targeted buildings.

In 1961, Seattle became home to the first revolving restaurant.

Starbucks, the world's largest coffee chain, was founded in Seattle.

The following movies/television shows were filmed in Seattle: Sleepless in Seattle, Frasier, Fabulous Baker Boys, Say Anything, Starman, War Games, An Officer and a Gentleman.

Both Bruce Lee and his son, Brandon, are buried in Lake View Cemetery.

Bill Gates (founder of Microsoft) has a 66,000 sq. foot home on the east shore of Lake Washington in the town of Medina.