Skip to main content

Meriden's Traffic Control Tower - Meriden, Connecticut

 


One of the enduring symbols of Meriden, Connecticut is its historic traffic control tower. In the early days of automobile travel, traffic at intersections was directed by an attendant in a control tower. The attendant would get to their booth in the tower by climbing a ladder from the base of the tower. This attendant would manually switch the familiar red, yellow, and green lights of the traffic light in a regulated pattern. The traffic control tower also includes signs for destinations such as Hartford, Middletown and Waterbury, which are nearby cities in Connecticut. Also featured on the sign is a mention of US Route 6A, which was a southern alternate route for US 6 in Connecticut and is now part of CT 66.

Meriden's traffic control tower was first erected and used on September 21, 1925. The traffic control tower was considered to be innovative for its time as this was before automated traffic signals caught on. The tower was considered unique and was quickly adopted by local residents who considered it to be a local landmark and a symbol of Meriden. The traffic control tower was originally placed a few blocks north of its current location in an area rich in transportation history in both Meriden and Connecticut at large. Early colonial roads and stage coach roads passed through Meriden, usually going to either Hartford or New Haven. Later, US 5 once passed through downtown Meriden, but now the highway runs east of Meriden down Broad Street.

As for the traffic control tower, during the 1930s, the Meriden Daily Journal ran a news column titled "The Traffic Tower", beckoning the popularity of the traffic control tower as a landmark. During World War II, servicemen from Meriden received a monthly news bulletin that featured a picture of the tower as a reminder of their home back in Meriden. On May 22, 1967, After 42 years of operation, Meriden's traffic control tower earned a retirement from service to make way for a modern traffic control device in its place. But since the tower also earned a place in the heart of the Meriden faithful, the tower was purchased and renovated by local business interests and committees. With that in mind, the traffic control tower was places near its original location at the intersection of Colony and West Main Streets in downtown Meriden, not far from the Meriden Green. As a symbol of Meriden's history and innovation, the traffic control tower can be enjoyed for generations to come.








How to Get There:



Sources and Links:
Roadside America - Traffic Control Tower
Atlas Obscura - Traffic Control Tower

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

California State Route 38

California State Route 38 is a fifty-nine-mile State Highway located entirety in San Bernardino County and a component of the Rim of the World Highway.  California State Route 38 begins at California State Route 18 at Bear Valley Dam of the San Bernardino Mountains and follows an easterly course on the north shore of Big Bear Lake.  California State Route 38 briefly multiplexes California State Route 18 near Baldwin Lake and branches east towards the 8,443-foot-high Onyx Summit.  From Onyx Summit the routing of California State Route 38 reverses course following a largely westward path through the San Bernardino Mountains towards a terminus at Interstate 10 in Redlands.   Pictured as the blog cover is California State Route 38 at Onyx Summit the day it opened to traffic on August 12th, 1961.   Part 1; the history of California State Route 38 California State Route 38 (CA 38) is generally considered to be the back way through the San Bernardino Mountains to Big Bear Lake of Bear Valley

I went to Buc-ee's and came away unimpressed

Buc-ee's, the Texas-sized gas station and convenience store that started in Texas, has been expanding its territory.  New locations have sprung up in Georgia, Alabama, and Florida.  Construction is underway, or plans are in place for even larger stations in Tennessee, Kentucky, South Carolina, Mississippi, and Colorado . For nearly four decades, Buc-ee's was a Texas-only novelty.  The first location opened in Lake Jackson, Texas in 1982, and another four stores opened over the next decade.  In 2000, Buc-ee's began its Texas-sized growth by adding over 20 new stores - mainly around Houston, Dallas/Ft. Worth, and Austin/San Antonio areas.   Each store was built larger - with more gas pumps, amenities, and offerings.  The store became well-known for its clean bathrooms, fresh-cut brisket sandwiches, and wall of beef jerky.  Texans and visitors from all around would take road trips to visit new stores or get their Buc-ee's fix.   Buc-ee's has billboards advertising thei

The original alignment of California State Route 33 in Firebaugh

Firebaugh is a city located on the San Joaquin River of western Fresno County.  Firebaugh is one of the oldest American communities in San Joaquin Valley having been settled as the location of Firebaugh's Ferry in 1854.  Traditionally Firebaugh has been served by California State Route 33 which was one of the original Sign State Routes announced during August 1934.  In modern times California State Route 33 is aligned through Firebaugh on N Street.  Originally California State Route 33 headed southbound passed through Firebaugh via; N Street, 8th Street, O Street, 12th Street, Nees Avenue and Washoe Avenue.  The blog cover depicts early California State Route 33 near Firebaugh crossing over a one-lane canal bridge.  The image below is from the 1935 Division of Highways Map of Fresno County which depicts the original alignment of California State Route 33 in Firebaugh. Part 1; the history of California State Route 33 in Firebaugh The community of Firebaugh is named in honor of Andr