COVID-19 Weekly Update: April 28, 2020
Pioneer Square Business Stakeholders-

The Alliance for Pioneer Square is working diligently to support the Pioneer Square community through the COVID-19 virus outbreak. This is the eighth in a series of weekly messages outlining impacts and resources available. Find the the March 11th here, March 17th here, March 24th here, March 31st here, April 7th here, April 14th here, and April 21st here .

*Please see this week's new resources and opportunities highlighted in   RED *

What's Happening

On April 2nd, Governor Jay Inslee extended the "Stay Home, Stay Healthy" order to May 4 which enforces the following measures:

  • Require every Washingtonian to stay home unless they need to pursue an essential activity.
  • Ban all gatherings for social, spiritual and recreational purposes.
  • Close all businesses except essential businesses. (See the a full list of essential businesses here. To clarify status, or to petition to be added to this list, please email:

Financial Resources

  • Facebook Small Business Grants program is offering $100M in cash grants and ad credits to small businesses experiencing disruptions resulting from the global outbreak of COVID-19. Up to 30,000 eligible small businesses who have between 2 and 50 employees and have been in business for over a year are eligible to apply. Applications in King County opened on April 18, click here to apply.

  • Seattle Sounders FC announced that the club is launching a targeted relief effort in the fight against COVID-19. The organization is establishing the Seattle Sounders FC Relief Fund, aimed primarily at supporting individuals, non-profits and small businesses in the neighborhoods surrounding CenturyLink Field that have been adversely impacted by the postponement of the 2020 MLS season due to the current public health crisis. These districts include SoDo, Pioneer Square and the Chinatown-International District.The fund is intended to support a range of needs, from groceries to rent assistance and monetary packages that will fund the following priorities:
  • Direct support of resources to shift workers and service providers in and around CenturyLink Field, and in neighborhood businesses that support and serve fans on matchday.
  • Direct resources to small business owners to pay their critical expenses during this crisis so that they can stay in business and keep their doors open.  
  • Direct resources to non-profits that serve and support individuals and small businesses in the South Downtown neighborhoods of SoDo, Pioneer Square and the Chinatown-International District.
The initial grant cycle was open through April 16, and the second cycle is now open until April 29th. Apply for the Fund here .

  • SBA Offers Disaster Assistance to Washington Small Businesses Economically Impacted by the Coronavirus (COVID-19)
  • *NEW* OED provides technical assistance to businesses applying for SBA loans and understanding the CARES Act (Coronavirus Aids, Relief & Security). This includes helping businesses navigate the application process and documentation. For general inquiries, please email or call 206-684-8090.
  • *NEW* Note, OED is warning small businesses about scammers seeking to prey on the small business community that has already been financially impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. OED has received numerous reports of scammers posing as either lenders or third-party providers offering to assist businesses with their federal Small Business Administration (SBA) loan applications. If contacted by a scammer, OED recommends businesses report scams to the Washington State Office of Attorney General, by calling 1-800-551-4636 from Monday to Friday 10 AM to 3 PM or completing a claim here.
  • Applicants may apply online, receive additional disaster assistance information and download applications here.
  • Applicants may also call SBA’s Customer Service Center at (800) 659-2955 or email for more information on SBA disaster assistance. Note, the deadline to apply for an Economic Injury Disaster Loan is Dec. 16, 2020.
  • This slide deck can guide you through the disaster loan program and includes step-by-step instructions on completing the application.
  • The City of Seattle’s Office of Economic development has compiled a summary of the CARES Act and a SBA FAQ.

  • The SBA, under the Paycheck Protection Program, is a offering loans designed to provide a direct incentive for small businesses to keep their workers on the payroll. SBA will forgive loans if all employees are kept on the payroll for eight weeks and the money is used for payroll, rent, mortgage interest, or utilities. You can apply through any existing SBA 7(a) lender or through any federally insured depository institution, federally insured credit union, and Farm Credit System institution that is participating. Other regulated lenders will be available to make these loans once they are approved and enrolled in the program. You should consult with your local lender as to whether it is participating in the program. Lenders may begin processing loan applications as soon as April 3, 2020. The Paycheck Protection Program will be available through June 30, 2020.

  • As closures, cancellations, and loss of work due to COVID-19 impact the King County cultural sector, 4Culure Cultural Relief Fund will distribute $1 million over the coming months. The first round of funding will be distributed beginning April 1 through May 15. Apply at any time within that time frame

Worker and Business Resources

  • *NEW* OED Resource Hub: With loans and grants available at the state and federal level, OED has created a comprehensive resource page for workers and small businesses impacted by COVID-19 and is providing technical assistance to support small businesses. News and information about new policies and resources available from the City of Seattle, the State of Washington, the federal government, and our philanthropic partners can be found on the OED's weekly Bottom Line blog.

  • *NEW* OED is hosting weekly informational webinars for small businesses to share new developments, hear about impacts experienced due to COVID-19 and answer questions. Businesses can join the OED every Wednesday, from 11:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. Register here for the next webinar and visit here for this week’s recording.

  • *NEW* Communities Rise legal clinic opens on April 28th. The Legal Clinic is recommended for business owners who have a short question for an attorney. Volunteer lawyers give free legal advice to micro-enterprise business owners at the monthly Microenterprise Legal Clinics in partnership with Ventures. These spots are limited. If interested in applying for the clinic please email

  • *NEW* Grow with Google is hosting its small biz livestream on Wednesday, May 6th from 9:00AM - 10:00AM to share the latest resources from Google and other partners to help support small businesses. Discover tools, tips and resources to help manage your business remotely during the COVID-19 crisis. Learn how to update critical business information online to keep customers informed, and how to host virtual meetings and events. Small Businesses and Non-Profits are encouraged to register here for the event.

  • The United Way of King County has announced an expanded program of rental assistance to serve people in King County struggling with rent due to the coronavirus. Workers may apply for this assistance if they: live in King County, are behind in rent, are economically impacted by COVID-19 and have a current household income that is below 50& of AMI. If workers meet these requirements, please fill out the online application here or call 2-1-1. Funds are available on a first come, first served basis. UWKC encourages workers to apply as soon as possible.
****Due to high demand, the application process has been paused.****

  • The Office of the Mayor has created a page contains information and links for City of Seattle programs and services that may be helpful for residents significantly impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.

  • The Federal Government has launched a comprehensive webpage for small business owners to research their options.

Public Safety and Vacant Properties

  • While our community is navigating this difficult time, the Seattle Police Department would like to provide some quick suggestions for securing businesses that now have reduced hours, or who have been forced to temporarily close. Click here for more information.

  • The City of Seattle has regulations and standards for maintaining vacant properties. These standards focus on keeping buildings closed to unauthorized entry and maintaining the structure and yard areas to prevent the accumulation of waste and deterioration of the building. Click here for more information.

  • The Seattle City Attorney’s Office and Seattle Police Department, in conjunction with the Racial Disparity Project, developed new protocols to address trespass issues facing the community called the Trespass Program. The Trespass Program is an agreement among individual property owners, businesses, and Seattle Police Department to regulate conditions of entry on their property. Owners must post signs notifying the public about three conditions of entry and cooperate in the prosecution of those charged with violating those conditions. Property owners and business owners can sign up for the Trespass Program by emailing

Neighborhood Advocacy

  • *NEW* The Alliance for Pioneer Square is hosting a virtual information session on Friday, May 8th from 1:30-2:30p on the ongoing impact of COVID-19 on Pioneer Square, relief and resources available from the City State and Federal government to all those impacted by the crisis, and the Alliance’s response to support our neighborhood. RSVP here to attend (note, a Zoom link will be provided on Thursday, May 7th to those who RSVP). Find the April, 24th 2020 meeting slides here and the webinar recording here.

  • On Thursday, April 16th, the Alliance for Pioneer Square hosted a one hour workshop in partnership with Merchant Method, aimed at providing a video marketing toolkit for businesses in Pioneer Square. Businesses and individuals who were unable to attend the live-streaming of this workshop can still access a recording of the the presentation here. Merchant Method will continue to monitor this video for comments, so business owners are welcome to engage with the video and ask questions or provide any feedback. Merchant Method has also provided some additional training resources which can be downloaded here to further assist businesses as they scale up their video marketing efforts.

  • The Alliance for Pioneer Square, in collaboration with DEI Creative, has launched an online marketplace as a tool for member businesses to generate revenue through online sales during the Coronavirus pandemic. The site is a collective for Pioneer Square businesses to sell items such as clothing and apparel to gift cards and merchandise from Pioneer Square restaurants and bars. The Support Local – Pioneer Square Marketplace is open and ready for customers. Read DEI Creative's full press release about Support Local here.To participate in the Pioneer Square Marketplace, register your business here.

  • As the neighborhood continues to navigate the ongoing impacts of COVID-19, we want to offer an opportunity to reconnect. We’ve heard from several of you that the opportunity for business owners and retailers to participate in an online forum would be a valuable outlet during these times to share resources,support, and stories. In responding to these requests we would like to invite you to join Pioneer Square Business Owners& Managers Facebook group.While this Facebook group has been inactive in recent years, we believe the time is pertinent to leverage the space and the opportunity to connect one another. Click here to join the Pioneer Square Business Owners and Managers Facebook page.

Partner Efforts

  • *NEW* The City of Seattle has capped Third-Party delivery app commission fees at 15 Percent. On Friday, mayor Jenny Durkan announced an emergency order capping third-party, app-based delivery platforms’ commission fees at 15 percent until unrestricted in-house dining returns. The policy requires that drivers receive 100 percent of tips, and it is illegal for third-party delivery companies to reduce driver pay rates in response to the new rules. This commission cap will allow restaurants that may not have considered these apps to transition to a third-party delivery service without facing further financial stressors.

  • The Mayor's Office is partnering with Goodwill Industries, Labor union partners, Public Health--Seattle & King County, and the Washington State Department of Health to coordinate the collection of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) for distribution to those on the front lines of the COVID-19 outbreak. A survey site has been set up to solicit donations--supplies needed at this time include new and unused N95, P100 and surgical masks, gloves, disposable gowns, eyewear, and more.

Neighborhood Spotlights
Support Small Seattle

The Support Small Seattle project, created by Fruit Super in collaboration with Built by Civilization and The Fold Magazine , is a growing editorially-focused online directory and storytelling platform of 180+ small, local, and independent businesses helping connect the community directly to businesses during this crisis. Here you will find updates on your favorite business owners along with their current needs, hours and services. 

If your business or a business you love is not yet included, please submit your/their information through the form on the website.

Nirmal’s Seattle

In the last two weeks, Nirmal's Seattle has been delivering food to sustain hospital employees who are working long hours in partnership with the nonprofit,  Off Their Plate. This grassroots organization helps connect restaurants and health care workers on the front lines of the COVID-19 response.

Last week, Nirmal’s served 150 meals to various hospitals and they plan to serve 200 more this week. Read the full inspiring story in the  Seattle Office of Economic Development's bottom line blog.
Additional Resources

Please let us know how we might best support you. Feel free to contact any of us with comments, questions, suggestions, or concerns.

The Alliance Team