Patrick Robinson
Matt Tilton of Tilton Fine Metalsmithing puts the finishing touches on the rings of the new White Center Wayfinding Kiosk he designed and built. It will be put in play May 19 at the corner of 98th s.w. and 16th s.w.---CLICK THE PHOTO ABOVE TO SEE MORE

UPDATE: White Center wayfinding kiosk taking shape; Now it's got color!

Will be installed at 98th s.w. and 16th s.w. May 19

Reflecting the diversity of the community it will stand in the heart of, the way finding kiosk created by Matt Tilton now has color and letters. "We used the best grade of automotive paint on it," said Tilton, a useful fact since it will be more resistant to vandalism. Two other factors were weighed in that equation. The letters that will be accompanied by arrows for directions are plastic and are easily replaced at low cost (though they are durable) and the height. Standing some 10 feet high even the bottom ring is well off the ground meaning casual tagging is less likely to happen.

The kiosk will be staged at the White Center Sign Shop then assembled over "about two hours" during the White Center Spring Clean taking place May 19.

Original post April 25
The wayfinding kiosk being built for the heart of White Center is taking shape in the shop of Matt Tilton at Tilton Fine Metalsmithing.

Built of what Tilton called "mild steel" the kiosk consists of 7 individual, slightly offset rings that when assembled with a baseplate weigh more than 600 lbs. But Tilton's clever design means they are each component parts making it easier to transport and assemble in place by two people.

The next step is to prepare the rings for paint by sandblasting which will be carried out by Flamespray Northwest in South Park.

The rings, meant to emulate those of the White Center community logo designed by Noise Without Sound's Kathi George, will be painted in seven unique colors. Mustard, yellow, white, red, blue and violet will be applied in a special arrangement with Steve Ford and South Seattle Community College's automotive paint booth by Tom Norton of Norton Complete Auto. "A whole booth day is expensive," said Tilton, "so it's great."

Once painted, 3 inch lettering will wrap around the rings and with arrows point the way to various parts of the community.

Tilton's shop, tucked into a corner of a building on Delridge Way is redolent of ozone, and the air is filled with the sounds of metal being worked. Hammers on anvils, grinders sending showers of sparks in a heavy metal light show and flakes of pure carbon pounded out of white hot steel by a massive 1894 air hammer.

Tilton intends to put low maintenance and tough plants in a small planter on top of the kiosk and consulted with Vera Johnson of Village Green Perennial Nursery as to the best type.

Above the planter is a silhouette of Mt. Rainier and down below are a map and an ID panel. There will also be a public space or bulletin board face but others will be plexiglass encased as long term information panels. Several phone numbers will be on the kiosks so people can be alerted if they require maintenance or repair. That work will be handled by volunteers.

The full kiosk will be installed May 19, at the corner of 98th s.w. and 16th Ave. s.w. early in the morning to coincide with the annual White Center Spring Clean .

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