Seattle has been experiencing a construction boom for several years, not just downtown but all over the city. A few of these new buildings are distinctive examples of creative architecture, but way too many of the new structures seem to have been taken out of the same box.

And box is the operative term, because utilitarian square shapes are dominant. From Ballard to Wallingford to South Lake Union and on into every neighborhood undergoing growth and change, the newest office buildings and condominiums and apartments all look much the same, like Lego blocks clicked together by a very uncreative child.

These new buildings are not necessarily ugly and, often, they replace some rather unappealing old hunks of strip-mall blight. Nevertheless, the face of the city is being altered significantly, and we are ending up with too many long blocks of big, bland boxes. In years to come, folks may wonder why the genius and innovation of this booming economic era was not reflected in the architecture of our time.

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