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Advertising on the Seattle Skyline

“We have a city with a remarkable skyline in a beautiful natural setting. Why would we want to deface it with corporate signs and logos?” asked Jeffrey Ochsner, a University of Washington architecture professor who opposes a proposal to allow signs and logos on Downtown Seattle office buildings.

Well, it appears that at least one company has found a way to deface the Seattle Skyline without having to go through any City Council or Design Commission red tape at all.

Geico Ad by Plane

Geico Ad by Plane

Geico Ad over Seattle

Geico Ad over Seattle

For the past month or so, when the weather has been amendable, GEICO Insurance has hired an airplane to drag its mascot across Elliott Bay, around the Space Needle, and over Downtown Seattle.  It has done so even though this route crosses the approach paths of both SeaTac International Airport and Being Field.

Geico Plane and Commercial Plane

Geico Plane and Commercial Plane

While the assumption is that this is perfectly legal, one might surmise that it at least violates the spirit of the proposed skyline ordinance.  The safety profile of dragging a banner just miles from the 18th busiest airport in the USA also has its own issues.


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