Holland Tunnel Avoiding Decor Debacle Thanks to Former Hoboken Resident

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Remember last December when holiday decorations on the sign for the Holland Tunnel caused quite the controversy? Well, no need to get whipped into an egg nog-induced frenzy this year, if so. The tunnel operator for the Port Authority of New Jersey and New York has announced new, letter-appropriate decorations are on the way.

In case you need a refresher, a former Hoboken resident made it his mission to change the Holland Tunnel decorations back in December 2018. The plaintiff, Cory Windelspecht, argued that a tree-shaped decoration covering the letter “N” in the Holland Tunnel sign would look better and more appropriate over the letter “A.”

holland tunnel decorations

At the time, Windelspecht said, “I understand it’s a petty thing — people have real problems but this is something that bugs me and it bugs a lot of people every day.”

But petty or not, that didn’t stop Windelspecht from taking his complaint all the way to the top. Windelspecht started a petition asking Port Authority to move the tree so that it covers the “A” in “Holland.” That petition garnered more than 600 signatures and ultimately, the Port Authority Board ruled in favor of Windelspecht’s tree-over-the-“A” preferences.

This year, the Holland Tunnel will endure no such controversy as the holiday decorations for the tunnel — which regularly brings commuters from Jersey City to Manhattan and vice versa — have undergone a full redesign. According to NJ.com, a holiday tree decoration larger than the one from last year will be strategically placed over the “A” in “Holland.” Again, a wreath will cover the letter “O” in “Holland.”

justin bieber christmas gif

And — drum roll, please — a menorah will be added to this year’s holiday decor as well. Commuters will be able to spot the menorah adjacent to the toll plaza on the New Jersey side of the tunnel.

Windelspecht’s petition isn’t the only reason the Holland Tunnel decor has undergone a major redesign this year. While his petition may have gained the support of 600 other locals, it’s clear Windelspecht and his petition-signers weren’t alone in their thinking. Last year, more than 21,000 people voted in a poll commissioned by the tunnel operator and it seems the decision was an easy one. Essentially, the poll found it nearly unanimous that locals preferred the tree decoration in front of the “A” in “Holland” and the additional holiday wreath moved over the “U” in “Tunnel.”

Basically, we like to think of Windelspecht as Cindy Lou-Who, but we’re not exactly sure who the Grinch would be in that situation. Okay, okay, it’s not a perfect analogy but with things like this, you gotta laugh sometimes.

cindy lou who the grinch

If you’ve been blasting Mariah Carey’s Christmas album throughout the house and your tree or menorah is already up in the living room, then don’t worry — the holiday decoration wait at the Holland Tunnel won’t last much longer. Holiday decor is set to go up this upcoming Monday, December 2.

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Steph Osmanski is a freelance writer who specializes in sustainability and health and wellness content. She is currently pursuing an MFA in Creative Writing at Stony Brook Southampton.