Thursday, June 04, 2009

Spinal replacement on the Astoria Column - in through the head!

They brought a big crane in this morning, and now they've taken the top of the crown off the Astoria Column. The goal is to replace the spiral staircase that goes from the bottom up to the white landing platform that you can see here. First, they remove the top of the column, then they take out the old spiral staircase, then drop in the new one. It sounds like quite an operation. Something like spinal replacement through the top of the head! There are workers on the platform now, looking like black ants. If you click on the photo, you can see the ball or something like that at the end of the chain or rope just at the top of what's left of the top of the column. Built in 1926, the column stands 125 feet tall - so you can imagine what the crane must look like from close up! I'll post a picture when I get one.

A notice from the Chamber of Commerce said that the base of the column would not be completely cordoned off, and it would be possible to view the process. I appreciate that they know we want to see this! I'm not sure how far they let cars up the road at the moment. They said at least some of the parking would be unavailable, so maybe the're still letting cars up the road. At the very least, I should be able park a few blocks from start of the road that leads in and walk up near the crane after work. Sometimes I walk up from here, but it's sultry and enervating, and I think I'll drive part way. I took this with a long lens. It's really quite a long way up from the river.

There's a full view of the column here. Just scroll past the trees and such.


Bubblewench said...

OOH! Defiantely go check that out! Wow. Didn't know they were doing that! I totally want to see them drop the 'new' staircase in.

Jacob said...

That's just incredible. It must be very narrow in there...and it would make sense to "drop" a new staircase in rather than have to build it in place...I guess.

Very interesting!

Joan@anythinggoeshere said...

Look at that. What an amazing process. Thanks for sharing the pics and thanks for visiting my blog and you lovely comment. Happy Outdoor Wednesday.