|I nabbed this speciman at the corner of 39th Street and 9th Avenue, on a comfortable August day in 1985, as I wandered Boro Park, Brooklyn shooting the last of the Culver shuttle el, which was being demolished. At the time, there were hardly any of these box traffic lights left. In place of the amber light, both the red and green would be on at the same time, to warn you that the light was changing, from green to red.|
This one held
the built-in control box, which controlled both itself and it's
catty-corner partner. As a kid, I always thought the ones with
the controls looked potbellied. I used to like listening to the
noise coming from the box, as it switched the lights from green
This light has long since disappeared, as did another long surviving boxlight in Sheepshead Bay, around that time. Like Diocletian's 11th hour persecution of Christians in Rome, the DOT must've gone on an 11th hour murder spree of the last surviving boxlights.
By 1992, there was still an intersection in Rockaway, Beach Channel Drive and the R-way Freeway, that had them. Steve Anderson informs me that one boxlight managed to stay alive in Forest Hills Gardens, until very recently. So even in today's retro-crazy mood, the DOT can't leave these poor unassuming workhorses alone.