SIA 2011 Annual Conference – Seattle WA

Presented by SIA with assistance from the Seattle Host Committee and Friends of Gas Works Park. Additional support from 4Culture King County Lodging Tax grant program and the King County Landmarks Program.

Seattle is a young city better known these days for coffee, software and music, but much of the region’s rich industrial past and present remain a vital part of the landscape and culture.

Though Seattle was settled by Europeans just over 150 years ago, the 19th and 20th centuries were years of tremendous industrial growth. Lumber mills, shipyards and mining operations were going full-tilt by 1900. Aerospace giant Boeing’s history goes back to a single flying boat built in 1919, followed by years of massive expansion during World War II, the Cold War and the dawn of commercial jet travel brought about by the 707.

When the Space Needle was built in 1962 for the “Century 21” Seattle World’s Fair, it marked a turning point in the history of the city, and some would say it’s never looked back since. Visitors to Seattle still make the Space Needle the city’s most popular attraction, and many get there by way of the 1962 Alweg Monorail, another World’s Fair amenity still in operation nearly half a century later.

In the past 50 years, other industries sprung up, including software, online retailing, coffee, music and biotech. Along the way, the city’s infrastructure has also grown—to overcome earthquakes, hills, lakes, canals and bodies of salt water with regrades, bridges, tunnels and a huge public ferry system. Some historic elements of this infrastructure remain, some have failed famously over the years, and some have been (or are about to be) replaced with marvels of modern engineering.

Seattle has also become known as a center for historic preservation and adaptive reuse, where Gas Works Park exemplifies conversion of an industrial site to a public treasure, and where the Seattle Art Museum’s Olympic Sculpture Park has reclaimed a massive waterfront site on the edge of downtown.

Special tours of aerospace manufacturing, maritime facilities, coffee industry as well as local infrastructure and adaptive reuse are on the agenda for the 2011 SIA annual conference in Seattle, June 2-5.

Celebrate 40 years of memorable SIA conferences with a visit to Seattle.

9:00 am to 1:00 pm; departing from the Grand Hyatt Hotel

Washington State Ferry Ride to Bainbridge Island
Climb aboard one of the Evergreen State’s famous fleet of car ferries that connect Seattle with points across Puget Sound. Visit Bainbridge Island, a popular enclave for Seattle professionals as well as artists and writers.

Kayaking on Historic and Busy Lake Union
Spend a half-day paddling around Lake Union, Seattle’s most interesting body of water. See the houseboat from Sleepless in Seattle, yachts and fishing vessels, the comings and goings of a busy seaplane port, plus waterviews of industrial sites, a NOAA facility and Gas Works Park.

The Boeing Tour (The Future of Flight)
Visit Boeing’s Future of Flight Aviation Center north of Seattle for this 90-minute factory tour for a one-of-a-kind opportunity to view 747, 767, 777, and 787 jets being assembled.

(full day course starting in the morning; actual time TBD)

Geophysical Techniques in Archeology

This workshop will explore the use of geophysical research techniques — with emphasis on electrical resistance and magnetometry — to enhance archeological investigations. The science, equipment, methods and outcomes of various techniques will be explained and compared. Intended Participants:

• • • •
Want to know more about geophysical techniques, such as electrical resistance, magnetometry and ground penetrating radar; May not be aware of recent advances in geophysical data collection and analysis; May not be aware of the increasing cost-effectiveness of geophysical techniques; Would like to know what to look for when hiring geophysical professional services.

2:00 pm to 3:00 pm at the Grand Hyatt

4:00 pm to 5:00 pm at the Grand Hyatt Hotel

5:30 pm departure from the Grand Hyatt; Northwest Railway Museum in Snoqualmie Travel by vintage motorcoaches operated by the METRO Employees Historic Vehicle Association (MEHVA)from the Grand Hyatt Hotel to the historic Snoqualmie Depot, then take a short ride via rail to the Northwest Railway Museum’s incredible restoration facility for an opening night reception and barbecue!

Morning departure (various times) from the Grand Hyatt Hotel. Choose from one of six special all-day tours of industrial, historic and other fascinating sites around the Seattle area and Puget Sound region.

Lake Union, Gas Works Park and the Montlake Cut
Take the recently built South Lake Union Streetcar from near the Grand Hyatt through the booming South Lake Union neighborhood (home to much high tech and biotech industry) to Lake Union Park. See the historic Naval Reserve Armory, opening in 2012 as new home to Seattle’s Museum of History & Industry. Visit several historic places on Lake Union, including Lake Union Drydock, where commercial vessels are hauled out for repairs; Jensen Motorboat Company, where many of Seattle’s famous hydroplanes were built; the historic 1925 Montlake Drawbridge (including an over-water walk beneath the span); and remarkable Gas Works Park, former site of derelict gas plant that was transformed by landscape architect Richard Haag (who will lead the tour).

Tacoma: City of Destiny
South of Seattle is Tacoma, historic 19th century rival for the transcontinental railroad terminus, and a city in the midst of a 21st century downtown revival. Visit the old Union Depot, now serving as a federal courthouse. See the Murray Morgan Bridge and other historic bridges that ring Commencement Bay and the Foss Waterway. See how Almond Roca candies are made at the Brown & Haley plant, and visit the bustling Port of Tacoma facilities along the historic waterfront and see the famous streamlined ferry Kalakala.

Industrial Seattle: Steel, Cement, Steam and Glass
Visit Nucor Steel to see metal waste turned into rebar and I-beams; Ash Grove Cement, where portland and masonry cement is made; Verallia Glass Manufacturers, who turn recycled glass into jars and wine bottles; and the historic 1906 Georgetown Steam Plant, the first National Landmark designated in Washington state and one-time electrical generating facility that, while no longer operational, remains completely intact.

Sensuous Seattle: Salmon, Wine, Beer, Chocolate, and Coffee
Go behind the scenes and sample the best of Seattle’s coffee, chocolate and wine, and visit the place where more people come face to face with salmon than anywhere else in the Northwest. We begin the day visiting the historic 1912 Hiram M. Chittenden Locks that connect saltwater and freshwater Seattle, and which include a fishladder, where returning salmon make their way back to Lake Washington. We then drive to Woodinville, east of Lake Washington, to lush grounds of Chateau Ste. Michele, one of the wineries that helped establish Washington as a leader in American viniculture. Next stop is the Redhook Brewery for a tour and lunch. We then head back to Seattle to visit Theo Chocolate, a maker of fine chocolates who uses vintage equipment in their factory alongside the Lake Washington Ship Canal. Last stop is a local coffee roasting plant for an afternoon jolt of caffeine.

Seattle Aviation: Past, Present and Future
The Seattle area owes much of its growth and vitality to Boeing, who built their first airplanes on Lake Union in Seattle nearly 100 years ago. Boeing really boomed during World War II, when B-17s and B-29s were built by the thousands, and workers flocked here from around the country. On this tour, we begin with a look back at the history of aviation by visiting a restoration facility north of Seattle at Paine Field in Everett, WA operated by the Museum of Flight, where volunteers bring vintage aircraft lovingly back to life. Models currently in the shop include a DeHavilland Comet, the world’s first jetliner; a WWII era Navy Wildcat; and Boeing 247, the company’s first plane from 1933. We then visit Boeing’s Future of Flight Aviation Center for a look at how the company is building the 787, as well as other widebody jets including the 747 and the 767 Air Force refueling tanker. Joining us for this special tour is Sam Howe Verhovek, author of the recent book Jet Age: The Comet, the 707 and the Race to Shrink the World.

Powering the Northwest: Water and Timber
Travel from Seattle to the Cedar River Watershed, with a complex of early 20th century industrial structures, a 1920s hydroelectric generating station (still in use), a 1914 dam, and a company town. Next stop is the Northwest Railway Museum and its unsurpassed collection, including an 1891 Pratt truss bridge, a functioning rail line, original train depot, steam locomotives and much more. Then, we visit the Snoqualmie Falls Lumber Company. The mill closed in 2003 and site has been turned over to a different use, but the 1916 landmark powerhouse and stack remain, along with several of the giant timber sheds. This former Weyerhaeuser Timber Company facility was the second in the nation to be electrified and the first to bring electricity to the timber-cutting operation. Final stop will be the spectacular 270’ high Snoqualmie Falls.

7:00 pm onward at the Grand Hyatt Hotel Eliza Anderson Amphitheater Drop in for a series of short films highlighting America’s industrial past. SIA members are welcome to submit films in advance on DVD. For more information, click the “News & Events” link at

7:00 pm to 9:00 pm at the Grand Hyatt Hotel Blewett Suite (Sixth Floor)


9:00 am to 12:30 pm at the Grand Hyatt Hotel Please visit the SIA website ( for a complete schedule of papers being presented.
12:30 pm to 2:00 pm at the Grand Hyatt Hotel
2:15 pm to 5:00 pm at the Grand Hyatt Hotel

6:30 pm boarding at Pier 56; returns at 10:00 pm; Dinner Cruise on Elliott Bay Board the M/V Royal Argosy for a gourmet dinner and a fascinating cruise around Elliott Bay, Seattle’s main harbor. Historian Dr. Lorraine McConaghy of Seattle’s Museum of History & Industry (MOHAI) will make a brief presentation about Seattle’s earliest industrial site, Henry Yesler’s 1853 sawmill.

9:00 am to 1:00 pm; departing from the Grand Hyatt Hotel
Historic Pioneer Square
Tour the cradle of early Seattle, the city’s famous Pioneer Square neighborhood. See the 1914 Smith Tower, Seattle’s first skyscraper, and historic buildings and places from the city’s earliest days. Led by Leonard Garfield, executive director of Seattle’s Museum of History & Industry (MOHAI).
Seattle Center and the 1962 World’s Fair
Ride the Alweg Monorail back in time 50 years to the site of the 1962 Seattle World’s Fair and enjoy behind-the-scenes peeks at some of the fairgrounds’ most famous landmarks. Led by writer and historian Feliks Banel.
Historic Downtown Theatres
Seattle is still home to several grand theatres, though a few of them now serve in new capacities. See the ornate exteriors and lush interiors of Seattle’s most famous showplaces. Led by a local theater historian and architecture expert.

Conference Hotel: Grand Hyatt Seattle 721 Pine Street Seattle, WA 98101 telephone 206 774 1234; fax 206 774 6120

Urban flair and Pacific tranquility converge at the Grand Hyatt Seattle, located in the heart of the city’s thriving retail and theater district adjacent to the Washington State Convention Center and Convention Place Sound Transit Light Rail station. Extravagant modern appointments, and classic Pacific Rim styling make this AAA Four Diamond hotel the ultimate escape from the everyday. Featuring original artwork, wood furniture and onyx accents that adorn the guestrooms. Discover the breathtaking beauty of the Pacific Northwest and the unique pace of this distinctive city at Grand Hyatt Seattle.

Our Special SIA rate is $139 per night (to June 14th if you wish to extend your stay), and includes complimentary in-room wired internet. The deadline for this rate is May 1, 2011.

Airport Transportation
Conference attendees flying to Seattle-Tacoma International Airport can take taxicabs, shuttle services, or the recently completed Sound Transit Light Rail (which stops at Convention Place Station, just a few blocks from the Grand Hyatt). For more information on this affordable option (less than $3 each way for the roughly 40-minute ride), click the “Getting Here” link at

Amtrak’s Empire Builder (from Chicago) and Coast Starlight (from Los Angeles) both terminate at Seattle’s historic King Street Station, with easy bus or Sound Transit Light Rail connection from the International District Station (ride northbound to the Convention Place Station, just blocks from the Grand Hyatt). For more information about Amtrak to Seattle, click the “Getting Here” link at