SEE IT: Crews to spend 3 days cleaning off Seattle's iconic 'gum wall'

SEATTLE -- After 20 years of people sticking their gum to the walls of an alley by Seattle's Pike Place Market, officials say it is time for a cleanup.

On Tuesday, Pike Place Market started cleaning off the estimated 1 million pieces of gum off the walls of Post Alley.

Known as the "gum wall," the sticky landmark has become a popular attraction to visitors and locals.

Besides gum, people leave pictures, business cards and other mementos. Some pieces of gum were shaped into hearts and messages.

The market has hired a contractor that will use steam to melt off the gum. Pressure washing damages the historic building too much.

Crews started Tuesday morning and said it would take about three 8-hour days to clean off all the gum.

Q13 FOX anchor Kaci Aitchison described the smell as "a perfect combination of Juicy Fruit and watermelon Bubblicious."

After the walls are cleaned, visitors are invited to start over on the actual 'gum wall,' which is to the left of the door to Unexpected Productions. Over time, people have been slamming their gum on both sides of Post Alley which was never the intention.