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Graffiti at TUBS (photo by Flickr user sharkhats)

TUBS, a longtime graffiti spot in Seattle, was demolished yesterday, reported. Though initially slated for demolition four years ago, the popular University District building had languished for several years after most had written it off — the urban art collective Free Sheep Foundation even held a “memorial” to its imminent death in 2009. In a piece appearing that year, The Stranger’s Jen Graves wrote of the eccentric building’s long history:

This building has quite a past: Between 1905 and TUBS-time, it was a residence and small commercial space, a grocery store, the Big Bear Store, the Lucky Store, the P&C Serve U Grocery, a car dealership, the District Tavern, and Fotomat Drive-thru.

From 1982 to 2007 the building was a bathhouse (a “legendarily skeezy hot tub joint,” in Graves’s words), but since its closure had attracted the attention of some of the areas most prolific graffiti artists. Though the owner encouraged this use, it drew the ire of some area residents: a 2001 Seattle Pacific-Intelligencer article on neighborhood complaints called TUBS a “notorious graffiti hub.”

Not unlike the fate of 5Pointz in Long Island City, the land will be redeveloped into a large condominium.

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Mostafa Heddaya

Mostafa Heddaya is the former managing editor of Hyperallergic.