Seattle's iconic 'Up' house may be demolished

Seattle's Iconic 'Up' House May Be Demolished

SEATTLE, Wa. (Q13) -- Edith Macefield's iconic Ballard home may be moving to Orcas Island, but only if enough money can be raised to pay the cost.

The 'Up' house is now the property of a nonprofit group.

"Rather than being forlorn and vacant, it will be lived in and loved," listing real estate agent Paul Thomas said.

The expense of bringing the 100-year-old house up to code for a new buyer proved impossible. So, it came down to a choice of demolishing the house or moving it.

The home's new owner is OPAL Community Land Trust — a nonprofit that provides affordable housing on Orcas Island where the home will be moved.

"This house will be purchased and lived in by a family who will live on Orcas Island and will love the home as much as she ever did," said Jaenne Beck, of OPAL Community Land Trust.

Edith Macefield became a symbol of strength in 2006 when she refused to sell her Ballard home to developers. After she turned down their million-dollar offer, they built large commercial office buildings around her tiny house. She died there in 2008 and the house has remained vacant since then.

It became known as the 'Up' house because in May 2009, Disney publicists attached balloons to the roof of Macefield's former house as a promotional tie-in to their film 'Up,' in which an aging widower's home is similarly surrounded by development

Now, OPAL plans to ship the house to Orcas Island, but not everyone is happy about the move.

"We'd rather see the house stay where it's at and become a business or nonprofit or something like a community center," Ballard's Jayson Morris said outside the house.

But even the skeptical say they're willing to donate to the Kickstarter fund to raise the $205,000 goal to move the house.

"We have to compromise. There are constraints in life and there are things out of our control," Morris added.

After all, it was Macefield's ability to stand up to things out of her control that made her a folk hero.

If OPAL does not raise the $205,000 by September 15, the house will be demolished. You can donate here.

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