The Space Needle is a one of the best known landmarks in Seattle, Washington. The tower is 184 m (605 feet) tall with an observation deck at 160m (520 feet) and a rotating SkyCity restaurant at 150m (500 feet). It is a popular tourist attraction in Seattle and tourists often wait for over an hour to ride the elevators to the top. The trip in the elevator takes about 40 seconds on an average day, but this can extend to over a minute on windy days. The Space Needle was built for the 1962 World’s Fair with over 2.3 million visits during this time. If you have ever wondered who designed this unique landmark, keep reading to find out.
Who designed the Space Needle?
The concept for the Space Needle came from Edward E. Carlson, who was the chairman of the 1962 World’s Fair. His idea was a tower with a restaurant at the top, with a design inspired by a tower in Germany. Although he had no history of design, he provided a basic sketch of a giant balloon that was tethered to the ground. John Graham, a local architect, came up with the idea of a rotating restaurant and the “flying saucer” design. The hourglass shape of the Space Needle was proposed by Seattle designer, Victor Steinbrueck. The Space Needle was designed to withstand an earthquake of magnitude 9.1 and hurricane force winds of over 320 km/h (200 miles per hour). In 1982 the SkyLine level was added at 30m (100 feet). This was in the original plans, but didn’t get built until this time.