Seattleites sure do love their caffeinated beverages. But I wondered, does Seattle really have more coffee shops than other cities?
To test this question, I used online maps to determine how many coffee shops were located downtown (1k feet per inch resolution). Seattle is the 23rd largest city in America according to Wikipedia, so to test its coffee shops, I compared it to #22, Boston, and #24, Washington DC. I wish I could have used Bing Maps, but they just don’t show the view I was looking for.
Seattle has a TON of coffee shops. We’re not just talking Starbucks either. With the sale of the Seattle Supersonics to Oklahoma City by Howard Schultz, many Seattleites won’t step foot inside a Starbucks anymore. Tully’s, Pete’s, Fuel, and independent coffee shops, among others, take first place in Seattle resident’s hearts for best coffee shop. But how many shops are needed to serve its residents?
Answer: 131. For a coffee search in downtown Seattle, 131 shops show up, even with half the map taken up by Puget Sound
Boston is more known for (Dunkin) Donuts than coffee, but when I visited Boston earlier this year, there were still Starbucks across the street from each other. How many coffee shops are in the same footprint within Boston?
My count is 60. Less than half of Seattle’s.
Washington DC isn’t know for their coffee, but they do have 83 coffee shops in their downtown area. Not bad, but still about two-thirds of Seattle.
Overall, no surprise, Seattle really does have more coffee shops than other cities of similar size.