An attractive electrical substation?

The Seattle City Light utility is preparing installation of the Denny Street substation.  Why is this news?  Because the new substation does not look like a substation.  Behold!

Denny Street substation

(Courtesy NBBJ Architects.)

Normally, an electrical substation is somewhat of an urban embarrassment, a useful eyesore shuttered behind a chain-link fence.  

However, the new substation is designed to be something of a community destination.  The structure will include an off-leash dog track, a 3,800-sq. ft. community space programmed by Seattle Office of Arts and Culture, and a 2,900 sq. ft. learning center.  

Aesthetically, the structure will be surrounded by a pedestrian walkway, fenced by inward-sloping walls (to lower its apparent profile), and feature metal and glass cladding that will glow at night.  (Would that be a kind of advertisement for the product?)

In our Design & Society class, we talk about the prominence of honesty in modernism: Things are best designed when they do not disguise what they are.  This station seems to have wrapped itself in the guise of a community center.  Is that dishonest?  A good idea?  Or, have the architects innovated a new category of structure?

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