09 July 2008

Let's Get Lit

Times Square got its first taste of neon in 1904 with an illuminated advertisement for Trimble's Whiskey. By the 1930s, Wrigley's was lighting up the New York night with this display for Spearmint Gum. And who can forget the Camel Cigarettes display which blew smoke rings over Broadway for 25 years between 1941 and 1966.

Now it's Hillsborough's turn. The township's Sign Review Committee has approved an illuminated directory sign for the Triangle Center shopping plaza at the corner of Triangle Road and Route 206. The new sign will be better for merchants because it will be larger, closer to the highway, in a better location, and - LIGHTED!

The story in Tuesday's Courier News doesn't say exactly how the new sign will be lit. Should we be expecting some old-fashioned multi-colored gas tubes? Maybe WaWa and QuikCheck will get into a "neon war" - each trying to outdo the other with bigger and brighter signs extolling the virtues of their coffee.

Better that than whiskey or cigarettes!


  1. Hey now, lets not get crazy here with neon wars! Even with the current light pollution in Somerset County you could still see plenty of stars. I wonder if Hillsborough has a light pollution ordinance. Clinton Township has one and they have found that it does not cost any extra money to have new street lights or sign made correctly so that the light is pointed down instead of all over the place. Good idea for any town that seems to pop out a new house every day. Take a look at this link: http://www.njaa.org/light.html . I bet most of the readers here don’t know that 30 minutes away is a great observatory that has public visiting hours during the summer. You and your family can get a tour of outer space all for free! But when you look through the giant telescope the one thing I hope you don’t see is the glare coming off the WaWa sign!

  2. There is already at least one illuminated sign in Hillsborough: the one at the VA Depot (near Docherty park). It's also really tall and painted bright carnival colors.

    It's on Federal property; I guess they can do what they want.