JetBlue installs its logo on Long Island City’s landmarked Pepsi-Cola sign

August 21, 2019

Photo courtesy of sarahtarno on Flickr

The iconic red Pepsi-Cola sign in Long Island City got a new look on Tuesday. In partnership with the soda company, JetBlue began installing this week an illuminated logo, a blue arrow, and a picture of an airplane on the sign that overlooks the East River, as first reported by the Wall Street Journal. The signage, which will only be up until Oct. 1, advertises the airline’s switch from serving Coca-Cola to PepsiCo products earlier this summer.

The installation of the sign, an official New York City landmark since 2016, was approved by the Landmarks Preservation Commission last week. Because the signage is temporary, a full review by the community, including a public hearing, was not required.

Some local residents were not on board with the changes. Council Member Jimmy Van Bramer, who represents the neighborhood, told the WSJ: “It’s a pretty significant change to a pretty visible, iconic sign. Even if it’s temporary, it shouldn’t be there.”

“Not a fan of the Jet Blue addition,” Instagram user nycw1 posted, along with a photo of the sign, on Tuesday. “And apparently more to come. Landmarks should be left alone.”

The 60-foot-high Pepsi-Cola sign was built in 1936 by manufacturer Artkraft Strauss, who had designed many illuminated signs for Broadway theaters and Times Square advertisements. It sat on top of a Pepsi bottling plant for decades before moving to Gantry Plaza State Park in 2009.

According to the Wall Street Journal, the sign was considered for landmark status by the LPC for nearly 30 years. When it was designated three years ago, the commission called it “one of the most iconic features of the New York City waterfront.”

PepsiCo and JetBlue said they worked closely with the LPC, Landmark Signs, and the Queens West Development Corporation to ensure the “integrity of the sign is carefully preserved” during the sign’s installation.

“We know that people love the Pepsi-Cola sign in Long Island City, which also happens to be JetBlue’s home,” a spokesperson for the companies told 6sqft in an email. “It’s a living monument of both the Pepsi brand, and New York City. That’s exactly why we believe it is the perfect symbol to celebrate our partnership.”

[Via Wall Street Journal]


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