Early Space Needle construction revealed in old film, blueprints

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by LINDA BRILL / KING 5 News

KING5.com

Posted on April 10, 2012 at 3:31 PM

SEATTLE -- Brady Wright's father built the Space Needle's air conditioning, heating and plumbing systems when Seattle's iconic structure went up in 1961. Now, Wright has unveiled rarely seen blueprints of the construction which were passed down to him from his father.

"You can actually see how they built this thing," said Wright as he rolled out the historic papers.

The blueprints show design for the rotating observation deck, the elevator shafts, and the famous tripod legs.

"There's actually a detail of how much concrete is below the ground, how deep those legs go into the dirt, four stories," Wright explained.

When Wright was 11-years-old, his father often took him to the construction site, taking 8-millimeter film of the Needle as it took shape. They are some of the first pictures from the observation deck.

At 605 feet, equivalent to a 60-story building, the Space Needle was the tallest structure west of the Mississippi at the time. Wright says he's proud that he was able to watch the amazing building going up.

"When I look at that structure, I kinda take a little ownership," he said. "It's part mine. I'm really proud to have been an observer watching that happen."

Wright hopes to take part in the Space Needle celebrations and he would like to donate his blueprints to the History House Museum.

   

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