Stunning Photographs of Bronze Traffic Signal Towers in New York City From the 1920s » Design You Trust


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In the early 20th century, New York’s Fifth Avenue faced severe congestion, with a blend of horses, carriages, pedestrians, street autos, bicycles, and vehicles vying for place.


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This typically led to very long delays and frequent collisions, negatively impacting community organizations. Dr. John A. Harriss, a wealthy doctor and the city’s targeted traffic commissioner, performed a very important job in assuaging this difficulty by funding the design and servicing of the first website traffic towers introduced on February 16, 1920. These towers, geared up with hand-operated alerts managed by targeted visitors officers, substantially enhanced visitors move.

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On May 16, 1921, New York City accepted the installation of 5 new, far more state-of-the-art website traffic towers along Fifth Avenue, with two supplemental towers afterwards included, thanks to The Fifth Avenue Affiliation. Developed by Joseph H. Freedlander and produced by the John A. Polachek Bronze and Iron Co., these 24-foot-tall bronze towers highlighted synchronized clocks and tolled the hrs. The to start with of these new towers began functioning on December 14, 1922, at Fifth Avenue and 42nd Avenue, marking a significant action forward in traffic administration. By April 27, 1925, a new metropolis legislation simplified the signal procedure to just crimson for “stop” and inexperienced for “go,” streamlining website traffic stream further more.

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