I was surprised to see a remaining Unidor 400, manufactured by McGraw-Edison, on Northern Boulevard and Crocheron Avenue in Flushing. Until 2009, New York had a brimming bounty of lamppost luminaires manufactured by several different companies, with lights dating all the way back to the 1930s. In 2009, however, NYC did a massive purge and replaced nearly every lamppost in town with uniform General Electrics, making for a rather boring lamppost streetscape. There were, though, a couple of lights that escaped the purge, like this one. Perhaps there some lamppost buffs in the work crew?

The Unidor 400, which burns 400 watts of juice in bright yellow, first appeared in NYC around 1972, when they were installed along the entire length of Flatbush Avenue in Brooklyn, and they were still numerous there until the 2009 purge.


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5 Responses to UNIDOR LEFTOVER, Flushing

  1. chris says:

    But…whats that wire hanging from the light to the pole for?

  2. the Cheese says:

    The Unidor 400 does have a brutalist 1970s appearance to it, as if visions of bright 1960s futures had worn off and the stark reality of 1970s New York was staring the designers in the face.

  3. Sandy Saltzman says:

    It is also amazing that it survived the 400 watt purge in 1991 that was supposed to have replaced all 400 watt luminaires with 250 watt fixtures.(About 60,000 according to the Times story). It is curious that the Unidor was apparently only used in N.Y.C. For ” operation mainstreet” in 1972 where high pressure sodium lights were installed on business streets such as Steinway street and Flatbush Avenue. This was almost a year before the program started to replace all N.Y.C. Lights with H.P.S.

    • dan says:

      And now even the 250 watts are gone, replaced with 150s. The old 150s were replaced with 100 watt lamps.

  4. IAIN says:

    Chris: I bet the wire hanging out of the fixture is tapped out of the light to supply seasonal/holiday lighting hung further down on the pole. Usually in these cases, as where I live, the pair of wires are strapped down the arm and pole with electric tape which comes loose and disappears after a few years.


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