Posts Tagged ‘Times Square’

Parts of Times Square now pedestrian plazas

May 26, 2009

Parts of New York City’s Times Square, the real and symbolic eastern terminus of the Lincoln Highway, have been closed to traffic to make the busy crossroads more pedestiran friendly. Specifically, portions of Broadway between 42nd and 47th Streets have been closed to cars. The plan, partly inspired by the redevelopment of downtown Copenhagen, was conceived by the city’s transportation commissioner, Janette Sadik-Khan. Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg says he will decide in December whether to transform the plazas into something more permanent. Click the image below to read more from The New York Times.

NYT plazas

As the NYT reports, “So far the pedestrian mall in Times Square is marked by little more than a few wobbly tables and metal chairs. A row of orange barriers frames the mall’s northern edge, where a half-dozen police officers patiently redirect traffic heading down Broadway.”

Drama of the broken string at eastern terminus

February 26, 2009

As reported here recently, a street sign was dedicated on the Lincoln birthday bicentennial marking the eastern terminus of the Lincoln Highway at Times Square. LHA director Jerry Peppers has been working on getting a permanent marker and was part of the unveiling. Here are some photos from his daughter Amy Peppers that document the unveiling, including the broken string drama.


The sign awaits unveiling with the pull-string secured until it’s ready.


Commissioner of the New York City DOT Janette Sadik-Kahn joins Jerry Peppers to pull off the cover.


But wait! The cover rips and the string pulls off!!


Who you gonna call?


NYC DOT workers to the rescue!




Peppers and Sadik-Kahn pose with Tim Tompkins, President of Times Square Alliance.


And Pepper again shows what he’d really like – a marker, perhaps a concrete post, at the intersection.

New York's Times Square signs Lincoln Highway

February 13, 2009

LHA director for New York Jerry Peppers joined Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg and NYC Commissioner of Transportation Janette Sadik-Khan to unveil a Lincoln Highway street sign in Times Square yesterday, the bicentennial of Lincoln’s birth. It is said to be temporary or at least the first until a larger one can mark the spot as the Eastern Terminus of the coast-to-coast road.


Peppers says the sign is “on a post at the corner of Broadway and 42nd Street just a few feet from where I posted the marker in the WQED special. It simply reads Lincoln Highway and is not exactly what we want [a plaque with an explanation], but it is a start.” The New York Times ran the above photo and a short blog entry, including this quote:

“As a wonderful tribute to the bicentennial of Lincoln’s birthday, we have placed a historic marker to celebrate the construction of our nation’s first transcontinental highway,” Mayor Bloomberg said. “It memorializes Times Square’s connection with the route’s storied history, and reminds all of us that New York City remains the gateway to the rest of America.”

It also quoted Peppers, who has worked at bringing this to fruition:

The Lincoln Highway brings together the ‘Main Street Across America’ and the nation’s most famous intersection — Broadway and 42nd Street. It’s particularly important to mark the eastern terminus of the Lincoln Highway, where it will serve as a reminder to millions of New Yorkers and visitors from all across the globe who pass through here of our nation’s history and the City’s connection with the rest of the country’s early highways.

In the 95 years since the establishment of the Lincoln Highway, there has never been a sign or marker at the Eastern Terminus, unlike the Western Terminus which has had various signs over time. The Lincoln Highway’s identity was never strong in urban areas, where streets and street names were already entrenched.

Eastern Terminus Marker – with paper & tape

August 22, 2008

The Eastern Terminus of the Lincoln Highway has never been marked – it was always simply Times Square – but Jerry Peppers is determined to change that. Here he is taping a temporary paper sign to his favorite concrete post at Broadway and 42nd Street during filming for Rick Sebak’s upcoming special. Rick also sent an updated photo that shows him at the intersection, which you’ll find at the end of this post.

The Western Terminus in San Francisco has been marked in various ways over the decades. Today it has a reproduction of a 1928 concrete post – click here to see read about Denny Gibson’s visit a couple weeks ago.

PBS visits Mindy and the Shoe House (& NYC)

August 19, 2008

PBS producer Rick Sebak made his way to New York City last week to catch the eastern end of the Lincoln Highway. One of the stops on their way back to Pittsburgh was at the famous Haines Shoe House near York, Pa., where he met LHA board member and long-time roadside researcher Mindy Crawford, who sent these photos of her interview:

She also described the day:

Just got home from a great day with Rick, [and crewmembers] Bob and Glenn. We spent the morning at the Shoe House. I did an interview on my top 5 “must see places’ in Pennsylvania as well as some general comments about the Lincoln. Then they interviewed Carleen Farabaugh (below), the owner of the Shoe House. They got a great shot of her husband, Ron and her grandson, Austin mowing the lawn and watering flowers. Then Carleen and I did a brief “preservation segment” on the care and upkeep of the Shoe. Even my husband Rodney got involved by being a “tourist” during Carleen’s tour.

We took a break mid-day to have the most amazing Thai food. Everything was delicious but it was almost as much fun photographing everyone taking photographs of the food before we ate. When we left the crew, they were headed back to do a few more approach shots at the Shoe House.

A couple days before, Rick and crew filmed at the eastern terminus of the highway – but as the site is not marked as the start/end of the LH, they spent time with its leading champion, LHA board member Jerry Peppers, whose office overlooks Times Square. Here’s a shot from Rick of Jerry – click HERE to read all about their day in NYC.

Piaggio duo feted at highway's Eastern Terminus

July 16, 2008

As Buddy and Bob pulled their Piaggio MP3 scooters into Times Square on Monday, ending their coast-to coast drive across the Lincoln Highway, reporters lined up to interview them. Their arrival was covered by The New York Times, Forbes, CNN, New York Daily News, NY Metro, and others, including a number of blogs. Buddy and Bob were nice enough to mention to the NYT that they used my Greetings from The Lincoln Highway as their travel guide.

LHA director for New York Jerry Peppers was there to greet them and provided the photos above and these observations:

Piaggio’s marketing people got a police escort so we could occupy the NW corner of Broadway and 42nd Street for a half hour or so without being harassed by traffic. They also arranged for media coverage and I was personally interviewed and talked about trying to get a bronze plaque to mark the eastern terminus on the building corner that was only about ten feet from where we were standing.

I took the paper sign that I had previously attached to the post on the corner where we are endeavoring to get a permanent sign post and pasted it there again for this event. The second photo shows Bob Chase on his bike next to that temporary marker. The Piaggio people produced a hand-held sign that found its way into many photographs as well.

I talked to both riders at some length, particularly Buddy who is a New Yorker. They were appreciative of meeting the LHA members in Evanston and the treatment they got. Also, Bob Chase has joined the LHA and actually carries his membership card! He lives in Livermore in the Bay area.

Here’s a screen shot from the NYT story:

Small blast hits Times Square recruiting station

March 6, 2008

The New York Times is reporting that an “improvised explosive device” damaged an armed forces recruiting station at 3:43 a.m. in Times Square, the eastern terminus of the Lincoln Highway in New York City. No one was injured in what is being called a small blast. Most of the damage was to the front door and facade of the Armed Forces Career Center on a traffic island bounded by 43rd and 44th Streets, Seventh Avenue, and Broadway. Traffic through Times Square was reopened by 6:45 a.m. For the story with updates and comments, click the screen shot below from The New York Times:


100th Ball Drop Marks New Year in Times Square

January 1, 2008

More than a million people filled Times Square, the eastern terminus of the Lincoln Highway, to celebrate the new year with the 100th drop of a giant lit ball. An all-new version features 9,576 light-emitting diodes behind 625 triangular Waterford crystals and aluminum frame. At 11:59 pm, December 31, the ball dropped down a 77-foot pole in 60 seconds atop 1 Times Square (not to street level). Here’s a video of it being assembled:

There were also 110 certified confetti engineers who tossed out 2 tons of confetti by hand from the tops of buildings.

The ball’s LED bulbs are smaller but more than twice as bright as last year’s lights, which were a spiky mix of 600 incandescent and halogen bulbs in 4 colors. It was lit for 6 hours but used only the electricity of 10 toasters. The new lights can create more than 16 million colors (and video imagery) but were limited to 25. The $30,000 in crystal is just a small part of the ball’s $1.1 million value.

Dropping a ball has been a way to synchronize clocks since the 1800s. The first ball in Times Square was made of wood and iron and lit with 100 25-watt incandescent bulbs. It replaced a new year’s fireworks display started in 1904 that was later outlawed by city officials. Three other balls have been used since then, and now this new one, the fifth. For the next 11 month, it will rest in a vault 50 feet below 1 Times Square, beside the fourth ball.