Out with the Old (Spaghetti Factory)

A while ago I saw a very sad sight, the removal of the trolley from inside the Seattle Waterfront’s Old Spaghetti Factory. I work nearby and we were all sad to see the place go. I have memories of eating in that trolley with the kids. Curious as to the trolley’s fate, I reached out the OSF folks on social media and I was relieved to hear they are storing the trolley for the future until they have a new restaurant.

I love how perfectly the trolley fits the old warehouse doors in the building. It’s pretty obvious how this was an old industrial building that was repurposed as a family restaurant. Now it’s being repurposed as overpriced condos. The plan is to use the facade of the old Ainsworth and Dunn warehouse and have it sprouting glass and steel out of the top, like an urban nurse log. The parking lot will become a non-descript glass cube. You can see the design proposal here. I can’t figure out why in the design proposal the brick on the new structure isn’t red to match the historic building. Seems a missed opportunity to me.

Overall, it’s not an awful design, but not great either, just sort of meh. But it does keep much of the visual history and legacy of the building intact and I guess that’s progress. I only hope progress can come with a side of gelato.

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