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Tuesday, March 19, 2013

"Why can't I see the Space Needle?" A Letter to the Editor

Posted by on Tue, Mar 19, 2013 at 12:59 PM

This just popped up in our inbox (emphasis mine):

Subject: Why can't I see the Space Needle?

Why indeed. Apparently because the mayor and city council are more concerned about developers desires than those of the citizens and visitors to this city of Seattle. Are they getting their palms greased? Perhaps. It sure seems that way. I was driving back from Portland this last Sunday. Seeing the Space Needle just made me feel like I am finally home again from that long drive known locally as the slog. The very idea that the city council and the mayor WANT to have bigger buildings is bad enough. I understand the need of commerce and expansion, but to do so with no concern whatsoever for the people of this region, not just Seattle, is just plain deplorable! Again, the people here get what they are given, not what they want. Or need for that matter. I feel very strongly their goal is just too much and the people need to speak out against the height and blockage of our icon that is the Space Needle. Other cities have spires, Las Vegas, Dallas and others. But NONE of them resemble the Space Needle. That was Bagley Wright’s goal. To create a place to see from afar and to visit up close that is uniquely Seattle. I can’t imagine how he would feel if he were alive today. He passed not so long ago. Perhaps the council and mayor were just waiting for his passing to pounce on this opportunity. I’m sure they’d have one hell of a fight if he were here today!

PLEASE DON'T BLOCK THE VIEW!

Rita Martinez
Seattle, WA

We assume she's referring to the Space Needle Corporation's recent campaign aimed at preventing new development in South Lake Union from blocking views of the Needle. But we'd like to point you, Rita, to a much more elegant solution than preventing development, which we reported on last week: "Build Additional Space Needles," the newest campaign to save your Space Needley views! Check out this rendering by KOMO News of our fair city with two dozen additional Space Needles—unforgettable! This is urban design at its best.

Meanwhile, as I was typing this, the Space Needle folks struck again, sending out a press release with the newest prong of their view-saving campaign: a one-minute radio ad. "Once our views are gone, we'll never get them back," it warns. Listen here!

UPDATE: Gold star comment of the day goes to MacCrocodile in the comments on this post:

Just yesterday, I went to the Space Needle with some friends from out of town. It was terrifying. I couldn't see the Space Needle from inside the gift shop. Of course I blacked out, and when I came to, I would have been completely disoriented except that I was outside and laying on the ground, looking up at the Space Needle.

 

Comments (44) RSS

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1
What a load of crap. Send out fake letters and expect people to believe them.
Posted by floater on March 19, 2013 at 1:09 PM · Report this
MacCrocodile 2
Just yesterday, I went to the Space Needle with some friends from out of town. It was terrifying. I couldn't see the Space Needle from inside the gift shop. Of course I blacked out, and when I came to, I would have been completely disoriented except that I was outside and laying on the ground, looking up at the Space Needle.
Posted by MacCrocodile http://maccrocodile.com/ on March 19, 2013 at 1:18 PM · Report this
3
Oh please, Ms. Martinez. If the late, great Bagley Wright (no relation whatever to the Wrights who currently own the Needle) could see the bullshit PR campaign being used to fool the simple minded into writing nonsense like this,THAT's what would bother him.
Posted by gloomy gus on March 19, 2013 at 1:21 PM · Report this
r.chops 4
Residents of Ballard respectfully request Queen Anne Hill be lowered by at least 100 ft.
Posted by r.chops on March 19, 2013 at 1:26 PM · Report this
tabletop_joe 5
I can't see the Space Needle RIGHT NOW and I'm LIVID. I'm indoors, but that's besides the point.

Wasn't the Space Needle supposed to be temporary?
Posted by tabletop_joe on March 19, 2013 at 1:27 PM · Report this
6
I'm actually kind of excited that the building going up across from me will block some of my view of the Space Needle.

But I'm also glad that the Funhouse got shut down so that I don't have to hear it anymore.
Posted by Tyler Pierce on March 19, 2013 at 1:31 PM · Report this
7
I'm incensed. My office faces the Space Needle and I can't see it either. Please raze the core of down town so I can see it from my office.
Posted by garumph on March 19, 2013 at 1:32 PM · Report this
8
I can't see the Space Needle from my apartment! I mean, I live on Queen Anne and even though it's a west facing window, I DEMAND my view of the Space Needle. Seeing it as I walk down the hill to catch a bus isn't enough.

Dammit, why can't I get that Needle in my veins???

[too soon?]
Posted by Chris B http://eccentric-orbit.org on March 19, 2013 at 1:41 PM · Report this
9
Seattle would be measurably improved if Rita and here luddite cohorts moved away.
Posted by Pol Pot on March 19, 2013 at 1:57 PM · Report this
10
No view of the Space Needle, no peace! just doesn't have the same ring to it.
Posted by treehugger on March 19, 2013 at 2:15 PM · Report this
Will in Seattle 11
Oh, geesh.

Just go watch the Fremont Sunday Market do the Harlem Shake on YouTube.

There, feel better?
Posted by Will in Seattle http://www.facebook.com/WillSeattle on March 19, 2013 at 2:17 PM · Report this
Karlheinz Arschbomber 12
I am So. Fucking. Pissed. Off.

Sitting here in Eimsbüttel, Hamburg, Germany, and cannot see the goddamned Space Needle.

Fuck you, Paul Allen.
Posted by Karlheinz Arschbomber http://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arschbombe on March 19, 2013 at 2:31 PM · Report this
theophrastus 13
option #a: paint space-needleses on all new buildings. option #2: google-glass™ glasses which superimpose space-needle images on all facets o' life.

(furthermore) i want, nay, demand(!), a cartoon (or model made of starbucks trash) which precisely indicate current "rays of view" overlaid with anticipated blockage of same. or else, as a concerned citizen i'll forthwith stopped being concerned about this issue; sine-die/[burp]
Posted by theophrastus on March 19, 2013 at 2:34 PM · Report this
14
Cut down all the trees too. They're always in the way of my view of the Space Needle.
Posted by Rocky Mountain Ben on March 19, 2013 at 2:40 PM · Report this
Fnarf 15
If all you people would just shut the fuck up and move away, we could put this glorious city back the way it was, when it was all surface parking lots as far as the eye can see, and you could see the Space Needle even if your head was up in your ass.
Posted by Fnarf http://www.facebook.com/fnarf on March 19, 2013 at 2:41 PM · Report this
16
MacCrocodile @2 is really making me wish Slog had a "like" button.
Posted by d.p. on March 19, 2013 at 2:43 PM · Report this
17
Where do the needs and desires of the The Space Needle view movement align or diverge from the other powerful grassroots cause in the area, the "please block my view of the EMP" movement?
Posted by Jude Fawley on March 19, 2013 at 2:43 PM · Report this
18
There's a Renton U-Haul with a Space Needle solution for all you whiners. It involves plywood and a little bit of good old-fashioned American can-do spirit. Every neighborhood can have their own, for cheap. http://www.roadsideamerica.com/tip/2549
Posted by alight on March 19, 2013 at 2:52 PM · Report this
Sargon Bighorn 19
Rita Martinez is the long lost Latina black sheep person distantly related to Dina Martina on her Step father's cousin's side.
Posted by Sargon Bighorn on March 19, 2013 at 3:01 PM · Report this
Will in Seattle 20
@15 has a point. Back when nobody lived here, I could see the Space Needle from N 45th in Wallingford or just south of the Woodland Park Zoo, but then they built all these buildings and all these people from Cali and NY moved here.

(ignoring that I moved here from BC)
Posted by Will in Seattle http://www.facebook.com/WillSeattle on March 19, 2013 at 3:14 PM · Report this
Gus 21
Why not build a new, larger Space Needle on top of Queen Anne, about twice the height of the current Space Needle (but starting higher -- so the tip would be about 3 times higher than the current Space Needle.

Visible from basically everywhere.
Posted by Gus on March 19, 2013 at 3:20 PM · Report this
biffp 22
If they want to build to 24 stories on the pretext of providing low income housing, the City better ensure it's 18 stories of low-income housing.
Posted by biffp on March 19, 2013 at 3:49 PM · Report this
23
I can't see the Space Needle from here either! RAGE! Bulldoze Admiral hill in West Seattle and fill in Elliot bay so I can drive directly in a straight line to Seattle Center whilst simultaneously staring directly at the Space Needle!!!!
Posted by high and bi on March 19, 2013 at 3:52 PM · Report this
MacCrocodile 24
I'm saving up money to have a permanent image of the Space Needle etched into my eyeballs. I think the city should be required to pay for at least half of the surgery.
Posted by MacCrocodile http://maccrocodile.com/ on March 19, 2013 at 4:05 PM · Report this
Will in Seattle 25
@21 good idea! We could call it the Super Space Needle!
Posted by Will in Seattle http://www.facebook.com/WillSeattle on March 19, 2013 at 4:19 PM · Report this
26
Ah Seattle, home of "don't bother my view, and I won't bother you" rugged frontier individualism.

In Soviet Seattle, property owns you!

You have to just basically not understand anything about law to think that someone has got to be corrupt to "allow" things like people to buy land and then build things on it.

You might not like it, but it doesn't point to a global fucking conspiracy. It points to the principle of private property. Which we still happen to have. Not that I'm defending it. But it is the simple reality: you give someone with land some money, they let you do stuff with that land. It's not corruption to allow people to buy land and build things on it. It's capitalism. Change it if you don't like it. Don't point fingers from your deskchairs.
Posted by K on March 19, 2013 at 4:22 PM · Report this
27
I personally feel the best solution here is to build as many Space Needles as possible around Seattle so everyone gets a view
Posted by RobToledo on March 19, 2013 at 4:50 PM · Report this
sloegin 28
If they build more needles, which way will I orient myself during prayer time?
Posted by sloegin on March 19, 2013 at 4:57 PM · Report this
Will in Seattle 29
@25 we pay more taxes than you slackers in the rest of the state. Without us you'd freeze in the dark.
Posted by Will in Seattle http://www.facebook.com/WillSeattle on March 19, 2013 at 5:02 PM · Report this
ScienceNerd 30
I'm looking forward to all the hot pink buildings.
Posted by ScienceNerd http://stanichium.tumblr.com/ on March 19, 2013 at 5:08 PM · Report this
Simply Me 31
I was walking with friends recently through Seattle. It was appalling how many trees were blocking my view of the Space Needle. Clear cutting our trees is the best way to preserve our views of the Needle.

We should also immediately pass an ordinance banning future planting of trees, because once they grow up we will never get our views back.
Posted by Simply Me on March 19, 2013 at 5:12 PM · Report this
Max Solomon 32
@29: WIS, you're yelling at yourself.

what, exactly, is the space needle trying to fight here? the height limit proposals for area S of Denny & W of westlake?
Posted by Max Solomon on March 19, 2013 at 5:18 PM · Report this
MacCrocodile 33
What if we go ahead and build around the Space Needle, but all construction should be required to be transparent. It could also solve the affordable housing thing, because how much could you really charge for a see-through apartment?
Posted by MacCrocodile http://maccrocodile.com/ on March 19, 2013 at 5:29 PM · Report this
34
you do realize there is a huge ad for "protect your views" on your right sidebar of the slog page....
Posted by stop taking ad money from them on March 19, 2013 at 5:40 PM · Report this
35
LOVE that the ad I'm currently seeing at the top of the page is asking me to write the Seattle City Council about protecting views of the Space Needle.

You know, we cannot see the Space Needle at all in Tacoma. I think I need to write the Seattle City Council about this grave injustice.
Posted by tacomamama http://tacomamama.com on March 19, 2013 at 6:01 PM · Report this
Will in Seattle 36
@33 let's use transparent aluminum. It worked for Scotty when he saved the whales.
Posted by Will in Seattle http://www.facebook.com/WillSeattle on March 19, 2013 at 6:09 PM · Report this
37
Took a screen grab of the ad, in case it's not showing up for everyone:
https://twitter.com/tacomamama/status/31…
Posted by tacomamama http://tacomamama.com on March 19, 2013 at 6:21 PM · Report this
DOUG. 38
You can no longer see the Space Needle from the Alki Tavern.
Posted by DOUG. http://www.dougsvotersguide.com on March 19, 2013 at 8:13 PM · Report this
39
After all this noise and campaigning, I think the City of Seattle should take the Space Needle by eminent domain and demolish it. Problem solved.
Posted by Brooklyn Reader on March 19, 2013 at 9:19 PM · Report this
Clara T 40
The panic about space needle views is silly, but view easements are generally a good thing in resudential neighborhoods. That way bigger houses don't spring up one after the other like a film of falling dominoes run backward. View easements make housing fit more organically with the land and recognize that beautiful views are an asset worth protecting.
Posted by Clara T on March 19, 2013 at 9:33 PM · Report this
Soupytwist 41
I really don't understand the acidic commentary on this topic. Do we not like views of iconic landmarks anymore? I am pro-density and pro-view. There are reasonable compromises.
Posted by Soupytwist http://twitter.com/katherinesmith on March 19, 2013 at 10:58 PM · Report this
42
Oh my god. . . I - I cant see the space needle! Someone help me! I'm lost! I'm confused! Please god, let this torment END! Someone please call the cops! Call the paramedics!!! Send help at ONCE!!!
Posted by Desslok on March 19, 2013 at 11:59 PM · Report this
Cato the Younger Younger 43
"Mr. McGinn...TEAR DOWN THIS NEEDLE!!!"
Posted by Cato the Younger Younger on March 20, 2013 at 3:48 AM · Report this
Cato the Younger Younger 44
@41, the problem is many of the voices crying over losing their view of the Space Needle are the same type who wanted to by high priced condos or rent expensive apartments on Capitol Hill to live right next to the "vibrant nightlife" and THEN turn around to bitch about that "vibrant nightlife" when it doesn't fit in with their sleep schedule.

Now people are crying that they want to live in their high priced homes near Lake Union with a "guaranteed" view of the Space Needle (I mean that's what the realtor promised right?) and are crying that development could change that.

If you want to live in a "world class city" and a city that is moving forward you have to let go of the past. And hell, we aren't getting rid of the damn thing. People just will have to (GOD FUCKING HELP US ALL) go outside (YIKES!!) and interact with other people (SUPER SCARY!) to watch the fireworks go off on the Space Needle.
Posted by Cato the Younger Younger on March 20, 2013 at 3:56 AM · Report this

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