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Image: Olson Kundig

Classic Pacific Northwest architecture firm, Olson Kundig will be embarking on “The Century Project” this fall, a $100 million dollar revamp of the Space Needle.

Century Project from Space Needle on Vimeo.

According to Architectural Digest, Olson Kundig will replace the deck’s metal safety cages with glass panels to give observers a 360-degree view of Puget Sound. In its current iteration, the metal cages obstruct visibility and make it more challenging to fully take in the city’s greatness from above.  The firm plans to install glass on the new rotating floor to enhance views further and show off the structure’s interior mechanics.

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Image: Olson Kundig

Additionally, double doors, a wider staircase and a lift for wheelchairs will be used to improve access for all. Guests visiting during the construction phase will be able to watch the work in progress, including the new sections of the observation deck as they are finished.

The Century Project will mark the tower’s third renovation since it was constructed for the 1962 World’s Fair. Others include the 1982 addition of the SkyLine event space at 100 feet, the new Pavilion entrance, and expanded retail space added in 2000.

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Image: Olson Kundig

The City of Seattle Landmarks Preservation Board and one of the original engineers will oversee the project to ensure integrity to the original design.

Working with Hoffman Construction Company and Seneca Group, construction will start in September 2017, with the first stage of development complete in June 2018. The Wright family, which owns the Space Needle, is funding the entire renovation.

“I believe we’ll look back at this as a pivotal moment in the history of the Space Needle,” Jeff Wright, Space Needle Chairman, said in a statement. “This project both connects us back to our roots, to the vision that my father and his partners had when they built the Space Needle in 1962, and guides us forward into the future for generations to enjoy.”

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