PCC Community Markets has revealed that it will open its long-awaited downtown Seattle location on Wednesday, Jan. 19 at 9 a.m., as the community recovers from the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“We are thrilled to welcome PCC to downtown Seattle,” said Downtown Seattle Association President and CEO Jon Scholes. “This is an exciting opening for thousands of people who live and work in downtown, and it comes at a critical time as we look to welcome more office workers back and more residents call downtown home than ever before. PCC and its commitment to community is representative of the spirit of downtown Seattle. Last year they stepped up and provided grants to support food access for area nonprofits, and now they will be opening their doors to downtown residents and visitors with a terrific neighborhood full-service grocery.”
Along with the new store, the co-op is also marking the growth of its membership program, which now has more than 100,000 members. While anyone can shop at PCC locations, members who pay a one-time fee of $60 receive a lifetime membership offering exclusive access to in-store offers, invitations to unique events, discounts from partner businesses with similar values, the ability to earn toward a potential annual dividend, and the opportunity to guide PCC by voting in its annual election to determine the board of trustees.
Downtown PCC Store Director Jai San Miguel, who joined the co-op in 2020 and was most recently the director of its Central District location, brings more than 20 years of grocery management experience to his latest role. “I am honored to open our newest location where my passion for team-building and supporting our local communities can be a focus every day,” noted San Miguel. “As the anchor grocery source for a vibrant Downtown, we are excited to be a part of the revitalization of the neighborhood and are committed to becoming a trusted member of the community where people come to enjoy a cup of coffee, catch up with a friend on a lunch break and pick up dinner.”
The new store also brings job opportunities to the area, as well career advancement for existing staffers. In fact, 40% of the location’s leadership roles have been filled by existing employees who were promoted to support the store. PCC partners with UFCW Local 21, who has represented the co-op’s non-management store staff for almost 40 years.
As with the grocer’s other stores, Downtown PCC’s shelves are stocked with food and nonfood products made without artificial preservatives, colors, flavors, sweeteners, nanotechnology or synthetic biology. Using those same ingredients, PCC chefs make salads, soups, hot entrées and side dishes fresh from scratch daily onsite in the PCC Kitchen. The store includes a fresh salad bar, a hot bar and a hot soup bar, along with a made-from-scratch deli; a 95% organic produce selection; 100% organic, non-GMO or grass-fed fresh meats, responsibly sourced fresh and frozen raw seafood; a self-serve bakery featuring homemade items; 12 private-brand lines sourced from local producers, in addition to nearly 200 supplements and vitamins packaged in recyclable brown glass to stay fresh; an ample bulk selection, including flours, rice and nuts; and a carefully curated selection of 100% Pacific Northwest-produced spirits to complement its collection of exclusive wines and local beers and ciders.
Additionally, in collaboration with the downtown community, PCC created a new Downtown Seattle Food Access Grant. The six recipients, which each received a $5,000 grant, were revealed last year.
The new store will feature house posts carved by Andrea M. Wilbur-Sigo, a member of the Squaxin Island Tribe. Her work, “The Way of Life” was created to convey the connection between people and the environment. Meaningful artwork is an important factor in meeting the requirements of Living Building Challenge Petal Certification by the Seattle-based International Living Future Institute, the world’s most rigorous green building standard. The Downtown Seattle location is PCC’s fourth store to pursue Petal Certification.
Featuring the co-op’s health and safety protocols to provide a safe shopping environment for staff, members and shoppers, the approximately 20,000-square-foot store is located in Rainier Square at 1320 4th Avenue.
Seattle-based PCC Community Markets is a certified-organic retailer and the nation’s largest community-owned food market, with an active membership of more than 100,000 members. Its fresh organic seasonal food is sustainably sourced from 800-plus local producers, farmers, ranchers and fishers. PCC operates 16 stores in the Puget Sound area, including the Washington state cities of Bellevue, Bothell, Burien, Edmonds, Issaquah, Kirkland, Redmond and Seattle. The co-op also plans to open new stores in Madison Valley and relocate its Kirkland location.