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Space Needle renovations take big step forward

The main work should be done by next May allowing visitors a wider and brighter view of Seattle.

Crews prepared to take a big step forward in the Seattle Space Needle’s renovation project on Friday night.

Workers will be on the job 24 hours a day, seven days a week to enhance the visitor experience at the iconic landmark.

When the project is done, the Space Needle will still have the same iconic shape, but it’s going to look a little different while work is underway.

Crews are hoisting a construction platform up to the restaurant level near the observation deck, and then they will do more building to attach it to the structure.

Space Needle Chief Marketing Officer Karen Olson said it would take anywhere from 40 minutes to a few hours to get in in place.

“That will lift it up to just below the restaurant,” Olson said. “They'll secure it in and then over the next two to three weeks they'll build out the rest of the platform.”

Then they will begin updating the observation deck and restaurant. Part of the remodel involves swapping out the metal pieces with glass panels so visitors will have more unobstructed views of the city.

“It’s a big game of Jenga, so you're 500 feet in the air, but the lack of space, so when you take something away, then you work on something,” she said. “It's really a game of complicated chess.”

The main work should be done by next May allowing visitors a wider and brighter view of Seattle. The observation deck will remain open throughout the project.

Visitors were fascinated by the process and the look of the tower. Lucy Higgins was visiting from London, and she said she only got one night here, “so I want to see the Needle.”

Higgins wasn't sure what to make of the cables and the platform already 100 feet in the air.

For a self-described “construction guy” like Craig Miller, it was an awesome sight.

“It lives up to everything,” Miller said. “It's actually bigger than what I thought.”

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