Ask people what comes to mind when you mention the state of Washington and they’ll likely either answer “Amazon” or “Space Needle.” Amazon is a pretty cool company, but from our perspective, the Space Needle is even more awesome.
This structure has been synonymous with the Seattle skyline since 1962, when it was erected for the World’s Fair. It opened to a visitor count of almost 20,000 per day. As the Space Needle moves closer to its 60th birthday, it still draws over a million visitors each year. Here are some interesting facts about this amazing steel structure.
No Place To Put It
The 605-foot tall structure almost wasn’t built. It was nicknamed the “400 Day Wonder” because construction began on it just a little more than a year before the opening day of the World’s Fair. In fact, the last of the structures elevators was put in just a day before the fair’s grand opening.
The Space Needle sits on a piece of land that’s only 120 feet square. It was the only land available for purchase. In order to balance the massive steel structure, the Space Needle needed a concrete foundation more than 30 feet deep.
Plenty Of Steel
The needle structure itself is made mostly of A36 steel, and it weighs about 3,700 tons. The concrete foundation keeping it stable and upright weighs about 5,850 pounds – of which 250 tons is reinforcing rebar steel.
Steel and metal are excellent building materials. It’s what we use – along with wood – for the construction of all our Miracle Truss® designs. Steel and metal structures are inexpensive. For example, the entire Space Needle was built in 1962 for just $4.5 million dollars. And, speaking of affordable—we’re running a few building specials of our own. Check out current building specials here.
Miracle Truss® buildings require little maintenance, and yet remain beautiful. The Space Needle is a testament to that. It opened in 1962 but didn’t get its first professional cleaning until 2008.
Steel and metal buildings are intrinsically strong, too. The Space Needle can attest to this. The tower sways only about 1 inch for every 10mph of wind, but it was built to withstand wind gusts of up to 200mph. Like us, safety is always paramount. The Space Needle’s elevators travel at 10mph, but this speed is reduced to just 5mph whenever there are high winds. During non-windy days the elevator cars actually descend at the same speed of falling rain. But, that makes them faster than a falling snowflake—which falls at just 3mph. So a journey up the tower during snowy weather makes it appear as if the flakes are falling upward.
None of our buildings come close to matching the 605-foot height of the Space Needle, but the clear span truss design means there are no flat ceilings or low hanging rafters to get in your way. Use that tall, open space for car lifts, or to add a second story loft.
There are just 4 simple steps to buying a Miracle Truss building. Just fill out this form and we’ll get free building kit brochures right out to you.