Credit: Port of Seattle

Economic Revitalization

Tracking downtown revitalization

Since the onset of COVID-19, DSA has been tracking the impact on our local economy. As downtown bounces back, we continue to follow dozens of metrics to trace the path to full economic recovery. A few of these metrics are below.

Downtown Revitalization Dashboard

June 2024 (May data)

Downtown Seattle was the first American urban center to experience the impacts of COVID-19, enduring a sudden economic downturn. As downtown continues to evolve, DSA will publish a monthly Revitalization Dashboard examining key metrics. The data sets provide a comparison point to the same time period in 2019. Additionally, the dashboard will feature notable stories that provide context regarding downtown’s renewal and reemergence.

Please credit the Downtown Seattle Association Revitalization Dashboard for use of charts, data and images on this page.

View the PDF

Visitors
Total monthly visitors since 2019

Nearly 2.5 million unique visitors came downtown in May 2024. This represents 92% of the visitors seen in May 2019.

Source: Placer.ai
Return to Office
Average daily worker foot traffic (Monday–Friday)

In May, downtown averaged more than 85,000 daily workers — the fourth consecutive month with a daily average at that level or higher. This figure represents an 8% increase from May 2023 and is 53% of the daily foot traffic seen in May 2019.

Source: Placer.ai. Note: The November 2023 daily average excludes Nov. 22–24 due to the Thanksgiving holiday.
Hotel Room Demand
Monthly hotel rooms sold compared to 2019

The number of downtown hotel rooms sold increased by nearly 9% in May 2024 compared to the previous year. This represented 102% of demand in May 2019, indicating a strong start to the summer tourist season.

Sources: Visit Seattle, STR
Occupied Apartment Units

In May, the number of occupied apartment units was nearly 58,000. This represented a 2.1% increase in occupied units compared to Q2 2023 and an 18% increase compared to Q2 2019.

Source: CoStar

Of Note in Downtown

bus

303000passengers

King County Metro reports that 303,000 people rode Metro buses on May 15, 2024, representing the highest one-day total in four years.

Shoe

424people

DSA/MID Community Safety & Hospitality ambassadors helped 424 people get from point-to-point downtown in May. That’s 323 more people using the Safewalk service than the month before.

Space Needle icon - white outline

6thin the world

In May, the inaugural Oxford Economics Global Cities Index ranked Seattle 6th overall in the world. The rankings of the largest 1,000 cities in the world are based on five categories: economics; human capital; quality of life; environment; and governance.

Coming Up in Downtown

Young woman shopping at outdoor clothing market

The Occidental Square Trading Post is open for business on Sunday, June 23. This new DSA/MID pop-up summer market will be produced in partnership with Northwest Marketplaces. It will feature more than 30 vendors selling vintage items, crafts, home goods and more.

Young woman surrounded by bright colors and lights
Photo courtesy of Museum of Illusions

Museum of Illusions opens in downtown Seattle on Friday, June 28. The immersive art experience, currently in 25 countries, will encompass 9,000 square feet of holograms and illusion rooms, creating a prime social-media-sharing experience.

Seattle Pride
Credit: Erika Schultz / The Seattle Times

Seattle’s 50th Pride Month celebration will be capped off by the annual Seattle Pride Parade on Sunday, June 30. The action begins with the pre-parade show at 10 a.m. in Westlake Park. The parade starts at 11 a.m. along Fourth Avenue, ending at Seattle Center with PrideFest.

COVID-19 Downtown Recovery Weekly Snapshot

These charts show weekly statistics from March 2020 through the most recent week available. To indicate the level of recovery, data is displayed as a percent of the same metric for the comparable week of 2019.

Notes on Sources

Downtown foot traffic data are provided by Placer.ai and are based on cell phone location data. Each person is counted once per day. International visitors are not included. Subsets of this data in the charts are as follows:

  • Office worker presence is estimated based on visits by workers who were present between 8 a.m. and 6 p.m. on weekdays in the downtown neighborhoods with the heaviest concentration of office space.*
  • Total visitors includes those who do not live or work downtown. It does not include international visitors.
  • Hotel data are based on monthly reports from STR, provided by Visit Seattle.
  • Apartment occupancy data are from CoStar. This is reported quarterly but the current quarter data are updated in real-time as new information is added to the database.
  • Domestic visitors counts those who do not live or work downtown.
  • Total foot traffic includes all visits to downtown by domestic visitors, residents and workers.
  • Pike Place Market visitors includes domestic visitors who do not live or work at the Pike Place Market.

*Note that workers who have not visited their work site in the past 90 days are classified as “visitors” until they are regularly visiting their work site at least three times in a one-week period.