Wednesday, March 21, 2012

"Irish" Traffic Signal Syracuse, New York

There's a small Irish neighborhood in Syracuse, New York with a traffic light unlike any other in the country. At the corner of Tompkins street and Milton avenue, perched high above the streets, the upside down Irish traffic light is situated. The light has been in the famed Tipperary Hill neighborhood since 1925.

Originally the light was an ordinary traffic signal, this made the locals of the area quite upset. They couldn't believe anyone would dare place British red, above Irish green.
The incensed neighboring youth began to shoot out the red lights by throwing stones at it. The city had to replace several lights, before finally agreeing to place the green light on top. The change however was short lived. Quickly thereafter the state of New York got involved and had the traffic light reversed back to the normal look. Almost immediately after the change the little stone throwers were back at it. Local newspapers made a tale about it being the work of leprechauns, given the incredible marksmanship that would be required to pelt out a traffic light with a rock.

Eventually the tiny Irish neighborhood won the right to have the green light placed on top. After several meetings with politicians and commissioners they were able to break through the red tape. Permission was granted to leave the green light on top, and a monument was even placed across the street commemorating the young stonethrowers.
To this day the light in Tipp Hill flashes the green on top and the red on the bottom, making it one of the most unique traffic lights in the World.

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