Ivar’s set to close after 34 years in Ballard

ivarsIvar’s Seafood Bar Ballard (6000 15th Ave NW) will be closing for good this Sunday, April 13. The Ballard landmark is closing after being unable to come to a lease renewal agreement with the building’s landlord.

Check out the statement below from Ivar’s Management regarding the closure:

The Ballard Seafood Bar is closing at the end of business on Sunday, April 13. After many attempts to stay at this location and renew the lease, Ivar’s was unable to come to an agreement with the building’s landlord.

Ivar’s thanks its many fans for their loyal patronage over the years, and is directing customers to nearby locations, including the Pier 54 Fish Bar, Salmon House Fish Bar, Northgate Mall and Aurora.

Ivar’s Seafood Bars is a growing, local chain and it wants to re-open to the Ballard community as soon as it finds the right location in the coming years.

The Ballard Ivar’s location opened in 1980 and has been a landmark in the local community through an intense period of growth and change.

Ivar’s employee and local resident Sara Ducharme was sad to hear that the location was closing. “I grew up in Magnolia/Ballard and this Ivars is just another place on the list of places that we loved going to as kids. We are losing all of the major landmarks to gentrification and it is very sad,” says Ducharme.

According to Ducharme, staff were notified about the closure at the beginning of March, with the date then set for March 30th. Signs were put up and subsequently quickly taken down due to the closure date being changed. “The last I heard was the end of April, that was until I saw the notice yesterday that the new date is now this Sunday,” says Ducharme.

Ducharme reports that staff have been promised positions elsewhere, but she has not had a chance to speak to the management about it as of yet.

“We just plain and simply lost our lease, due to not enough business and rent increases. Probably much like what happened to Azteca,” says Ducharme.

This closure is yet another to add to the list of long-term Ballard businesses (Azteca, Great Harvest Bread Co., Savour and B&O Espresso) that have been forced to permanently close their doors this year.

Ivar’s will be open before the closure from 10:30 a.m. – 10 p.m. Tuesday through Thursday, from 10:30 a.m. – 11 p.m. on Friday and Saturday and from 10:30 a.m. – 10 p.m. on Sunday.

Photo courtesy of Sara Ducharme.

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Chris
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Chris

Isn’t this playing a bit fast and loose with the word “landmark”?? This building looks just like any other fast food restaurant. The Taco Bell down the block is more architecturally distinct. I could see calling the Dick’s on Holman or the Red Mill/Totem House a “landmark” but not this. i also think it’s a bit of hyperbole to call Savour and B&O “long-term Ballard businesses”. Savour was only around for less than 5 years. B&O was only in Ballard for 2 years. Don’t get me wrong, I really liked both of these places and hate to see them close. Ivar’s seemed like just another fried fish place but I know it’s a local institution so I can see how some people would be nostalgic for it. Azteca I completely don’t get. Truly mediocre food. Also if these places were the great landmarks people make them out to be they would have had enough business to keep the doors open or to find a new place. Not like there’s a shortage of commercial spaces in Ballard. All the times I went past Ivar’s I don’t think I ever saw more than 1-2 cars parked in the lot. I also don’t… Read more »

Celine
Guest
Celine

Sad to see this go, it was a great local business that had a good amount of customers. Hopefully it won’t just sit as an empty lot.

Norse
Guest
Norse

I’m sure another big development will fill the void.

Priscilla
Guest
Priscilla

There goes Ivar’s in comes Ross, I see a trend to looking like every other place in America without character or personality, scary. Ivar’s is good to its employees and supports the community, I am sad to see them go. Maybe they will find another location locally, one can hope.

Curtis
Member
Curtis

Oh goody!
I hope it’s the future home of more “luxury” apartment homes…with inadequate parking and vacant retail at street level! :(

rramstad
Guest
rramstad

FYI, I’m fairly certain that this property has been for sale for some time now. It’s therefore slightly odd that Ivar’s didn’t just purchase the property outright, and keep the restaurant, if the business warrants… so that brings one to the obvious conclusion, they probably aren’t doing enough business to making purchasing the building make sense.

tamae
Guest
tamae

Always makes me happy everything this place, interior decor, clam chowder, cute window painting and many other things….I will be so sad. This place

bill andersen
Guest
bill andersen

Landmarks are in the eye of the beholder. growing up with nice memories understandably makes it a landmark……

MH
Guest
MH

The greed fest in Ballard continues .

Skipspence
Guest
Skipspence

Apodments!

Anon
Guest
Anon

@Chris If someone bulldozed an In-N-Out back in your home town, you’d probably be miffed too…

Linda
Guest
Linda

I have lived in Ballard for almost 20 years and did not even know this place existed.

I agree with others that the particular building is not particularly special. Clearly the waterfront locations (ship canal and down by the ferries) are more the flagship locations.

I personally don’t mind seeing a not-very-healthy fast food joint close.

jj
Member
jj

I feel the tone of the article at the end comes across as misleading. Ivar’s lost their lease, but the others chose to close for other reasons. I’m not sure it was intentional, maybe it’s just a mix of a hot-button issue & the words “..forced to permanently close…”.

Blueglass
Guest
Blueglass

What Curtis said times 200 – the staff at this Ivars have always been so nice – they will be missed.

john
Guest
john

RIP Ivars!

ironymaiden
Member
ironymaiden

that list of businesses had varied reasons for departing. “forced to close” is a phrase designed for page views, and it’s working.

good job?

Fred
Guest
Fred

This location for an Ivar’s always seemed out of place to me. Hope they get a better location closer to the water and with an out-door service bar… similar to what they have in other waterfront locations.

Jimmy Rustler
Guest
Jimmy Rustler

Is the food at Ivar’s any good? I’ve never been there so I was wondering if it was worth my time.

Greg Leon Guerrero
Guest
Greg Leon Guerrero

Totally sucks in my book. That’s been there, in Ballard, since the grunge days. It’s part of the culture of pre-happening Seattle. Bum deal. Yet one more notch for Seattle, the generic city. And I’ve been here for 26 years. Hope they relocate somewhere close in Ballard–somewhere east of 24th and north of Market.

Chris
Guest
Chris

@Anon

We didn’t have In N Out where I grew up but nice of you to make an assumption. Also if you read my whole post (and obviously you didn’t) you would see that I very clearly stated: ” I know it’s a local institution so I can see how some people would be nostalgic for it.” What part of this sentence can’t you comprehend? Why don’t you try reading an entire post before making knee jerk reactions to it.

punchjay
Guest
punchjay

What ever happened to the landmark restaurant Skippers on 15th?

Troy
Guest

your mom goes to college

Nick
Guest
Nick

I have eaten here a lot and it is one of the few places you can actually get a piece of wild salmon cooked well. Just because something looks one way on the outside doesn’t mean that on the inside. I feel like that is a life lesson. I noticed the many times I have been business was good, lot of take out. I notice that the staff was recognized by a lot of the locals that came in, and were very friendly. Sorry not everything has to be $45 for dinner! Sigh… Sorry Ivar’s I did more than my share! I will miss your Salmon Caesar!

sockm
Guest
sockm

Nice. Can we please get rid of the McDonalds/Burger King/Taco Bell/KFC now. Get rid of all that crap.

Don D
Guest
Don D

Sorry to see this business go. Aloha to Sandy and the rest of the staff. We love you guys!