In 1958, a new streamlined lamppost — completely different than the ornate cast and wrought iron posts that then lit NYC streets, designed in the Beaux Arts era, 1890-1915 — appeared on Broadway on Murray Street opposite City Hall. It featured a stainless steel shaft with two slots, a curved mastarm, and a new luminaire that emitted a greenish-white light.
They were the work of industrial artist Donald Deskey, who had earlier designed the interior of Radio City Music Hall and the Crest toothpaste tube.
By 1962, the Deskeys were being mass-produced and dominated many NYC byways as a contrast to the octagonal-shafted posts that had first appeared in 1950. They also took their places on parkways and expressways (this was also the debut of General Electric M400 luminaires, which would also dominate their era).
By the 1980s, though, the Deskey posts had ceased production and the few thousand remaining today are being grandfathered out — their replacement parts are no longer being manufactured.