From afar it's simply a symbol of Seattle, a photo op for tourists. But when you get closer, it's about much more.
"I think of all the men who built it," said Jack Edwards.
Edwards is one of the few surviving man who actually helped build the Space Needle. He still has a photo of himself, 500 feet off the ground, with an alarming lack of safety equipment.
"There was no OSHA back then," said Edwards. "We were all just very careful and looked out for each other."
It took just 407 days to build the Space Needle, through rain and snow and more rain. The worst of the injuries was a broken leg.
Now 79, Edwards is free to speak his mind about the changes he has seen around the Needle over the years.
"Well, I don't like that thing Paul Allen built over there," he said, pointing to the Experience Music Project and its unique design. "And what are they doing inside there now? They're selling T-shirts. Selling T-shirts of my needle!"