Sketched July 8, 2014
I’ve had my eye on the Troy Laundry building in South Lake Union since I started working at The Seattle Times, which is just around the corner, almost eight years ago.
I used to sketch it from my window at the old Times building. And I’ve often walked by on my way to lunch or to check the food trucks that congregate in the area.
Back in the day, before most people had a washer and dryer at home, the Troy Laundry Co. ran a pretty large operation here. Its fleet of 50 trucks hauled bundles of laundry and dry cleaning from customers as far away as Kirkland and Renton.
Now the 1927 building — owned by The Seattle Times from 1985 to 2011 — is just a shell of itself. Bulldozers have started leveling the block and construction of two high-rise office towers will begin soon.
But I have no reason to be nostalgic. The hollowed-out walls of the historic landmark are being preserved and integrated into the new complex. When the towers are completed, these ornate brick and terracotta detailings will provide an interesting juxtaposition of old and new, present and past, not to mention another excuse to leave the office and make more sketches of the rapidly changing neighborhood.