Alas, the UW reactor building is no more
Several months back, I blogged about the effort to save the historic nuclear reactor building on the UW Seattle campus. Sadly – despite its listing on the National Register of Historic Places – UW went ahead with the demolition of this beautifully brutalist building. Below is the most recent e-newsletter from the Washington Trust for Historic Preservation, and please visit www.savethereactor.org to read the whole story.
Nuclear Reactor Building
Celebration of Life
1961 – 2016
On July 19, 2016, the Nuclear Reactor Building (NRB) was unceremoniously and quietly demolished by the University of Washington (UW). The passing of this historically and architecturally significant building ends a years-long battle between preservation advocates and the UW.
The NRB hailed from the Atomic Age of the 1960s, representing nuclear engineering technology and contributing to the University’s science and research programs. The NRB was unique. It was an architectural, engineering, and artistic marvel dreamed up by a stellar team of University professors and alumni. It set itself apart from the rest of campus with its Brutalist architectural features.
In 2014, plans for demolition of the NRB were resurrected by the UW. The building made it on the Washington Trust’s Most Endangered Properties list for a second time in 2015 (the first was in 2008) and preservation advocates rallied to Save the Reactor. In the end, the structure met its demise. Read the eulogy for this significant structure to learn more.
Although the NRB is gone, it is not forgotten.
Join the Washington Trust for Historic Preservation, Historic Seattle, and Docomomo WEWA for a gathering at the NRB/More Hall Annex site to mourn the loss and celebrate the life of the Nuclear Reactor Building:
Tuesday, August 9 • 5:30 pm
Please wear all black attire. We’ll go to a local pub afterwards. No registration or RSVP is required. In lieu of flowers, please share stories and memories at the wake, on the Save the Reactor Facebook page or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.