A little while back I visited the Georgetown Power Plant Museum near Seattle.
I like to visit old and decommissioned industrial plants, they give a sense of history, and also sometimes are a challenge to figure out - and explain how the engineering was done at the time. It's interesting to understand how the equipment worked, how specific materials were used, and see how some techniques are different today.
The old Steam Plant is now a museum, preserved and maintained by Seattle City Light. It was built in 1906-1907 by the Seattle Electric Company along the Duwamish River, and was running two vertical GE Curtis turbines producing large amounts of power for the local industrial community. A horizontal Curtis turbine was added about ten years later.
The plant also represents an architectural landmark, as early example of reinforced concrete construction.
Seattle City Light (called the Department of Lighting at the time) purchased the plant in 1951, and continued to operate the plant on a very limited basis until the seventies, until they decided to restore it and make it available to the community for tours and events.
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