SEATTLE -- Seahawks fans celebrating the Super Bowl victory caused an estimated $25,000 damage to a century-old ornate glass archway called the Pergola in Seattle’s Pioneer Square.
A Parks Department spokeswoman, Joelle Hammerstad, says people walking on top of the Pergola broke 17 glass planes. Each of the laminated panes has to be specially made at a cost of $800 or $900. In addition, she says climbers damaged copper flashing, which has to be replaced. And the whole thing will have to be spray-washed and painted to clean up graffiti.
Because it’s an historic structure, the work has to be done to unique specifications.
The Pergola was originally built a century ago to cover an underground restroom. The whole structure was rebuilt after it was knocked down by a truck in 2001.
Seattle Police Department Spokesman Det. Mark Jamieson said about a half dozen people were arrested for various crimes after the Super Bowl game. One person was arrested for reckless burning in the University District, while a couple of people were arrested for throwing bottles at police officers.
In the University District, people burned couches in a large bonfire in the middle of the street. It got to the point where officers decided “enough is enough. The fire department has to put this out.”
In response to criticism that officers appeared to have just stood back and watch revelers, Jamieson said their policy was to strike a balance as long as the mood was celebratory and no crimes were committed, to give people latitude.
Technically, it is illegal to block the streets, but officers were given the authority to use their discretion, said Jamieson. Officers weren’t going to break up the crowd as long as they were peaceful and celebratory. Their orders were to keep people safe, but once bottles started being thrown at officers and windows were broken, officers were told to move in and disperse the crowd.
“If we've got 2,000 in Pioneer Square, imagine what the reaction would have been if we had moved in and said ‘The party's over.’ It would have been much worse,” said Jamieson.
Jamieson said “alcohol definitely play a part” in the incidents.