Friday, February 01, 2008

Red Hook #2: Once Deserted Beard St. Gets Stop Light

2008_01_Ikea Beard Street

We stopped and stared when we were taking photos on Beard Street and realized that a stoplight was being installed in front of what will be an entrance to the new Ikea. We will admit that this is an insignificant thing to many people, but it is a rather symbolic thing to those that recall the days when no cars drove down Beard Street and it was where driving schools took people to learn how to drive school buses and tractor trailers. (Red Hook is also a hugely popular spot for regular driving schools, but that is another story.) There is also some irony to those that recall the struggle to get a stoplight installed on Van Brunt Street. To that end, a Red Hook resident dropped us an email that is worth posting:
1) It took a fatality, two community protests, numerous serious accidents, and a year long study for DOT to put a stop light up at Wolcott and Van Brunt - across the street from a public school. Not so at Beard and Dwight, it seems. A light before traffic.

2) In the Norman Rockwellian nostalgia represented by September of 2006, my friends and I used to take a few beers and our ball gloves and play catch out on Beard Street on Sunday afternoon, with nary an interruption. Ah, those were the days.

So, you see, it's not just a stoplight.

Beard Street Traffic Light One

Beard Street Stoplight Three

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