The Bright LED ‘Highway’ Lights of Essex Street Take Hold

Posted on: July 14th, 2017 at 5:02 am by

One by one, the last of the Bishop’s Crook light poles are being extracted from Essex Street. Replaced instead with aerodynamic “highway-style” lamps equipped with LED bulbs.

Last week, a support crew was spotted removing the decorative lamp outside 7 Essex Street. Its bones completely uprooted from the sidewalk. Then yesterday morning, two more LED poles were hoisted into place.

At latest count, there are only five Bishop’s Crook lights on Essex south of Delancey Street, three of which are clustered near Broome. The holdouts are now on death watch. As previously reported, the stockpile of poles will be relocated to “contextually appropriate locations on Norfolk, Suffolk, Stanton, and Rivington.

LEDs on Essex were first floated six years ago by the Lower East Side Partnership. It was a controversial pitch at the time, met with some resistance by preservation-minded community folk living south of Grand Street. The argument hinged upon the gradual dismantling of Lower East Side character, with the elimination of the Bishop’s Crook poles from Essex as the latest battle front. As such, the BID was accused of essentially sterilizing the neighborhood.

On the bright side (pun intended), the thoroughfare is more well lit.

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