Sunday 20 October 2019

Motorists vote to move festive wreaths because of their infuriating placement

‘For some reason the tree is over the letter N in the word Holland instead of the letter A where it would fit perfectly.’

(Julio Cortez/AP)
(Julio Cortez/AP)

By Alistair Mason, Press Association

New York motorists have won a victory against life’s little irritations – as officials agreed to move some annoyingly situated Christmas decorations.

The traditional wreaths placed on the toll plaza at the Holland Tunnel, which joins Lower Manhattan to New Jersey, have long had drivers in a state of mild perturbation because of their counter-intuitive placement.

While a circular wreath sat in front of the O in Holland, an accompanying triangular Christmas tree-shaped decoration was placed in front of the N – not the letter A.

(Julio Cortez/AP)

Such was irritation caused to local road users that a petition to have the positioning altered quickly accrued nearly 3,000 signatures.

Cory Windelspecht, who started the petition, wrote: “For some reason the tree is over the letter N in the word Holland instead of the letter A where it would fit perfectly.”

He added: “I am asking you to join with me in asking the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey to move the tree decoration over from the letter N to cover the A.

“This is the time where ALL PEOPLE should be celebrating and have an opportunity to enjoy the decorations and festivities.

“This country is divided already, let’s start doing things to bring us back together.”

(Julio Cortez/AP)

Windelspecht said he’d had plenty of backing from other road users who supported his campaign.

“One guy told me he avoids the Holland Tunnel and takes the Lincoln for the entire month of December, even though it adds an hour to his commute,” Windelspecht told

Now Windelspecht has got his way after the Port Authority agreed to make the change.

Having heard complaints, officials held a five-day public poll – with over 21,000 having their say.

Now they have not only moved the tree from the N to the A, but also removed another wreath that hung over the U in the word tunnel.

“The Holland Tunnel is about to bring even more comfort and joy to its travellers this holiday season,” said Port Authority chairman Kevin O’Toole.

“The people have spoken, and we have listened. In true holiday spirit, may this change help bring more of us together.”

The authority explained the old design was “symmetrically aligned above the tunnel lanes – an arrangement that extends back two decades”.

It also said it would explore hosting a design competition next year to find “even better ideas for how this iconic and historic structure can get into the holiday spirit”.

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