Softly glowing in neon pink, the Pink Elephant Car Wash sign is a beloved landmark for many residents of Seattle. Located in the now-coveted Denny Triangle, the sign has been hailing customers with its buzzing presence for 64 years. Now surrounded by Amazon’s skyscrapers, it seems that the perky pink pachyderm will find a new home within one of the tech giant’s office buildings.
While the larger of the two Pink Elephant signs is being donated to Seattle’s Museum of History and Industry, reportedly Amazon asked Pink Elephant owner Bob Haney for the smaller sign, and he agreed. The company has said it is invested in restoring the sign to its original glory, and that it will be displayed somewhere on the Amazon campus.
Although the Pink Elephant is closing its Denny location, the car wash still operates about a dozen locations across Puget Sound. Despite the closure of the Denny location, a local organization called Friends of Historic Belltown is striving to grant the electrifying elephant historic landmark status, which would allow it to remain in its current location even with further development of the property.
The Seattle Times has stated that the 19,000-square foot lot the car wash used to occupy is one of the most valuable in the city, appraised at around $1,050 per square foot by the county.
The Pink Elephant sign is part of a growing collection of Seattle landmarks that have been scooped up by Amazon. The company is in possession of the sign for the old King Cat Theater, which hangs in its Coral building (also called Blanchard Plaza). Additionally, Amazon paid around $250,000 to help repair the historic Macy’s Christmas star, which hangs on a historic downtown department store in which Amazon now occupies a majority of the floors.
No matter where the Pink Elephant sign winds up, and regardless of local sentiment toward Amazon, there’s no doubt that the two are both quintessentially Seattle; perhaps in some ways, their coming together can light the way to a brighter future for the city.
This article was originally posted on GeekWire by Kurt Schlosser.
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