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worldsfairent

How Tall Was It?

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Oh, yes, I agree, MB. I will always be fascinated by the Trypon and Perisphere.

I also think that the Space Needle is an extraordinary structure.

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Nice job Trey!

It sort of reminds me of a poster I used to have in my office back in the early 90's...

post-3699-1236876026_thumb.jpg

I also agree with Jim about the Space Needle - it is one of the most inspiring structures I've ever visited.

It really captures a wonderful moment in time. A time when the future was only limited by our imagination!

Best Regards,

Kevin

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It kind of bothers me that the Tower of The Americas (built for "Hemisfair" 1968 World's Fair) in San Antonio gets so overlooked. I believe it is even taller than the Space Needle, but not by much. Wasn't it the 1st freestanding concrete structure of it's kind?

It just seeems to be forgotten about.

tower3.jpg

americas-1a.jpg

americas-2a.jpg

americas-3a.jpg

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Hey RocketThrower... I'll grant you, the Hemisfair Tower (and in fact, Hemisfair in general) is sadly overlooked... but aesthetically, I'd also have to admit that it's nowhere near as beautiful or original a design as the Space Needle.

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I've visited the top of the Seattle Space Needle, the Las Vegas Stratosphere, the Tokyo Tower and a long list of USA skyscrapers. My last visit to Tokyo was on a very gusty day with winds nearing 60 MPH at the Tokyo Tower. It was quite a "ride" at the first observation level. It was a rather scary place to be as knick knacks began to shift on display shelves.

Ray

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Wow, Ray! What a white-knuckled experience that must have been.

On a more somber note, I also feel compelled today to remember the extraordinary vantage point my wife and I once shared (like many fellow PTU'ers, I'm sure) of New York City from the top of the World Trade Center. It was an awe-inspiring view which is often obscured by the unimaginably tragic memories of 9/11/01... but one which I will always try to hold onto nevertheless.

view_of_NYC_from_the_top_of_WTC.jpg

(btw - this isn't my photo - but the closest i could come to what i remember)

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If I remember my Tokyo history right, their tower was built in the 1920's.

Does anybody know why the U.S. chose to avoid bombing it into smithereens, while leveling the rest of Tokyo (other than the Imperial Palace) during World War II?

One would think an obvious communications centerpiece would be near the top of the strategic target list.

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Returning to business as usual... according to Wikipedia, the Tokyo Tower was built in 1958, Randy.

History

In the postwar boom of the 1950s, Japan was looking for a monument to symbolize its ascendancy as a global economic powerhouse. Looking to the Occident for inspiration, the Tokyo Government decided to erect its own Eiffel Tower. One of the tower's key early proponents was politician and Sankei Shimbun co-founder Hisakichi Maeda. The tower was completed by the Takenaka Corporation in 1958 (69 years after the Eiffel Tower) at a total cost of ¥2.8 billion.

Maeda's son, Fukusaburo Maeda, later became president of Nihon Denpato, the tower's operating company. In 1988, at the height of the Japanese asset price bubble, he established a subsidiary (Tokyo Tower Development) to set up a golf course project in Chiba Prefecture. Although the golf course opened in 1995, it failed to make a return on its profits due to an economic recession in Japan, and the company ended up deeply in debt and losing money. As a result Tokyo Tower was mortgaged for 10 billion yen in 2000.

The planned opening of the taller Sumida Tower in 2011 is expected to further depress Tokyo Tower's profits as broadcasters move to the new tower.

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I think that the problem with the Hemisfair theme (The Tower of The Americas) is that it came so soon after the Space Needle and it seemed (to me at least) to be an attempt to duplicate the Space Needle idea. In other words, the idea for the tower did not seem all that original in 1968. Perhaps that is why it remains rather anonymous today especially when compared with the Space Needle which has become an civic icon for Seattle.

I have often thought that Frasier Crane had an incredibly cool apartment because it had a balcony that overlooks the Space Needle.

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<!--quoteo--><div class='quotetop'>QUOTE</div><div class='quotemain'><!--quotec-->I have often thought that Frasier Crane had an incredibly cool apartment because it had a balcony that overlooks the Space Needle.<!--QuoteEnd--></div><!--QuoteEEnd-->

Agreed, Jim. I used to spend a lot of time on the Frasier set-- and often poked around by the photographic backdrop, thinking what a great view it was. I'm sure it's rolled up in storage somewhere now.

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Whoa! You spent time on the set of Frasier?! May I ask what your profession is and how you had that opportunity? I would love to learn some more.

PS: In reality, I know that the backdrop of Frasier's apartment was just a photograph, but it did look so real and that show and his balcony view were great advocates for Seattle.

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I write and produce for tv and film, Jim. And while most of my work is in drama... my wife (who is also a writer/producer) has done most of hers in sitcoms. So through her various jobs and comedy colleagues we both spent a fair amount of time hanging around the set of Frasier. It was a great show with great writing and wonderful sets. And yes, I'm sure it also made a nice booster for Seattle-- not that they really need it-- second only to San Francisco in my book for America's most beautiful city.

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I just returned from San Antonio and thought I would share some pix... all taken in the last three days.

The second photo was a display in the ground level lobby near the elevator. It shows that the crown of the tower was constructed then hoisted up into place. The desert is called "Strawberry Tower" and is served in the revolving restaurant at the top. The control box you see is a very rare view.... I bribed the waiter to take my camera in the dishroom to get me a shot of the speed control box for the revolving restaurant!! He says that when turned up all the way, the thing is mighty fast... fast enough to create a considerable breeze!

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"I bribed the waiter to take my camera in the dishroom to get me a shot of the speed control box for the revolving restaurant!!"

I'll bet Homeland Security would love to know that THAT guy could be bribed!

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HERE'S A TOWERING STRUCTURE, 105 STORIES HIGH, THAT NO ONE KNOWS ANYTHING ABOUT.

Any guesses?

Ray D.

Ray...is that the nutty hotel (never occupied) built in N. Korea by our favorite whackjob leader?

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