The Life and Death of A Glass Box

An Under-Appreciated Example Of Modernism Sits At The Cliff Of Its Demise

a modernist glass and steel one-story building with a blue evening sky reflecting off of its side windows
This delightful example of modernism presents itself dramatically on a February evening. It is flanked on its southwest side by a recent two-story apartment building — a modest taste of things to come. As property values have risen and the need for more apartment buildings never ends, this structure and its vacant medical office neighbor will soon be demolished to "make way." The incongruous steel 'X' seen in one of the windows may have been added sometime in the past forty years as an earthquake retrofit or to address a structural weakness. (Photo by author)
A flat-roofed building’s walkway leads into a sheltered space of big plants under lit by natural light by openings in the roof
Worthy of mention: Next door, the sleek, low-profile Bellingham Professional Building at 1815 C street invites one along a broad pathway into sheltered, internal garden spaces among empty doctor's offices. This structure is a campus of two otherwise nondescript buildings under one roof, and the duo demonstrates a pleasant and stimulating connection with the outdoors. The landscaped path is enhanced wonderfully by many sky openings in the eaves. This building, with its overgrown shrubbery, will also soon perish. (Photo by author)
Front of the glass-walled building radiating rays of light upon the sidewalk
The heavy, Mondrianesque lines of an old pharmacy no one wants anymore stand artfully resolute in the morning sun. Meanwhile, a bright-green carpet of moss has gleefully hand-painted its presence upon the doorstep. Note the angled edge of the lowered structural ceiling mentioned earlier, about 18" below the inside top of the windows. Serious-as-hell utility-locating spray paint decorates the sidewalk, foreshadowing the coming changes. (Photo by author)



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David Scott Spangler

History can be connective. Since I am moved by what remains, I am documenting and sharing remnants of Pacific Northwest history before they vanish forever.