Holland Tunnel holiday decorations trigger OCD for New York commuters

Poorly positioned Christmas decorations on a sign for the Holland Tunnel, connecting New Jersey and New York, have caused enough upset for over 1,300 people to sign a petition to change them.


The petition on Change.org, created by commuter Cory Windelspecht, calls for a decoration shaped like a Christmas tree on the “Holland Tunnel” sign over its New Jersey entrance to be moved.

He requests the triangular tree be shifted from over the “N” to the “A” – “where it would fit perfectly” – to help those like him who suffer from obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD).

Decorations “ruin the holiday festivities”

“This one small thing triggers anyone with the slightest hint of OCD every time they enter the city,” said Windelspecht in his statement accompanying the petition. “On top of that, it’s just unsightly and ruins the holiday festivities for people to enjoy on such a great piece of architecture.”

The light-up holiday decorations – installed by the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey – also include two wreaths: one which sits neatly on top of the sign’s “O”, and another positioned slightly awkwardly over the “U”.

Windelspecht is clearly not alone in his displeasure. At the time of writing, 1,356 people had signed his petition.

Almost 90,000 vehicles travel daily through the Holland Tunnel, which runs under the Hudson River from Jersey City to Lower Manhattan. It is named after chief engineer Clifford Milburn Holland, who died before the tunnel opened in 1927.

Holland Tunnel is “a site that should be celebrated”

“The entrance to the Holland Tunnel (one of the busiest enterance [sic] ways into America’s most populated and famous city) is a majestic site of architecture and history,” Windelspecht said. “A site that should be celebrated.”

“This is the time where all people should be celebrating and have an opportunity to enjoy the decorations and festivities,” he added. “This country is divided already, let’s start doing things to bring us back together.”

Elsewhere in New York City, festive decorations can be found in the form of the giant tree at Rockefeller Center, this year topped with a sparkling star by architect Daniel Libeskind, and a colourful installation in front of the Flatiron Building by Studio Cadena.

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