Smith Tower Seattle, Fourth tallest building in the world in 1914 (44 stories) Great decorative work throughout. Indigenous American inspired decoration in the lobby and Chinese inspired decoration in the top floor restaurant. All beautifully conserved and lit with fine views from the top floor along 6th Street to the Space Needle. The original Otis lifts are, however, the best part of the conservation work. In polished brass with ornate detail they are beautiful objects lovingly restored.
The Space Needle, Seattle (View from 6th Avenue and Stewart Street).
This was constructed for the 1962 World Fair and despite the ever increasing height of downtown, remains a dominant landmark in the city. Two lifts give access to the viewing floors at its upper level and these have been carefully conserved to retain their 1960'S styling. The lower viewing floor rotates and has recently had a glass floor installed. This is quite an experience and fully in keeping with the futuristic design. At the base of the tower a shop captures those exiting but it is of high quality and well laid out.
Downtown Seattle. Most buildings have been constructed in the last 10 years. In this view south west from Boren Avenue only the curved Marriot Hotel to the far right and the concrete clad tower to the far left appear to be older. Seattle has seen an increase in population of around 40% in the last 30 years and this is reflected in an increasing density of its downtown.
I was recently in Seattle. This is a view from the Pike Place Market across Puget Sound towards the Olympic Mountains which shelter the port from the Pacific Ocean beyond. The market is a very interesting place. Built in 1907 as a general market it was subject to a city sponsored demolition proposal in 1963 to be replaced by garages and apartments. This led to major protests and, as a result, the area was formally protected in 1971. Unlike most other protected structures the function of this building as well as the building is protected. This means that even though it is now the city's top tourist attraction rents are reasonable and it thrives as a farmer and craft market. It is all managed by the Pike Place Market Preservation & Development Authority, a group established under State law. This is overseen by a 12-member volunteer council. Careful conservation works since the 1970's have maintained the place's character. Most noticeable are the tiles along the main market floor inscribed with the names of donors for work carried out in the late 1980's. A nice place for some lunch and to admire the beautiful setting of this booming city.
Marks of Time
Sketches of buildings in the North West of Ireland and further afield with a little information about their history.