SEATTLE, Washington (AP) —
A piece of Seattle history was washed away on Tuesday — or rather, 1 million little pieces.
Crews are cleaning up the city’s famed “gum wall” near Pike Place Market, where tourists and locals have been sticking their used chewing gum for 20 years.
The wall is plastered with wads of gum in a kaleidoscope of colors, some stretched and pinched into messages, hearts and other designs. People also have used the gooey pieces to paste up pictures and other mementos.
On Tuesday, powerful steam cleaners were melting it all off.
The market hired a contractor to use steam because pressure washing would damage the historic building.
Market officials decided now was as good a time as any for the cleanup, but they expect people will start leaving gum on the space again soon.