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What to Know

  • The Port Authority have moved the Christmas wreaths on the Holland Tunnel after a majority of commuters voted for change in an online poll[hhmc]

  • More than 80 percent of the 21,500 votes the agency received were in favor of moving an A-shaped wreath and taking down an O-shaped one[hhmc]

  • The O-shaped wreath will be "repurposed" and moved to the Journal Square PATH station, Port Authority Executive Director Rick Cotton said[hhmc]

The Port Authority have moved a pair of controversial Christmas wreaths on the Holland Tunnel after a majority of commuters voted for change in an online poll.

More than 80 percent of the 21,500 votes the agency received were in favor of moving an A-shaped wreath to the letter "A" — and completely removing an O-shaped wreath, moving it to the Journal Square PATH station, Port Authority Executive Director Rick Cotton said at press conference Monday afternoon.

The public has spoken! 21,500 votes received in response to our poll! And here is the winning option of The Great Holland Tunnel Decoration Debate! Thanks to everyone who voted! #HappyHollandDayshttps://t.co/ztTuvKfJ05pic.twitter.com/iLDW0c5fph

— Port Authority NY&NJ (@PANYNJ) December 17, 2018

“As you know, a commuter made the suggestion a little over a week ago that the holiday decorations ought to be moved into different positions," Cotton said.

"…[W]ere delighted to have responded, were delighted to have listened, and were delighted to have made that change,” he added.

The O-shaped wreath will be "repurposed" and moved to the Journal Square PATH station, Cotton said.

The Port Authority moved the wreaths Monday night.


Photo credit: panynj.gov

The Port Authority conducted a survey asking people to choose the wreath placement they felt was most optimal after commuter Cory Windelspecht started a petition to move a Christmas tree wreath thats shaped like an “A” from the “N” on the Holland Tunnel sign to the “A.”

The wreaths placement on a dissimilar letter “triggers anyone with the slightest hint of OCD every time they enter the city,” the petition said, adding that its “unsightly and ruins the holiday festivities for people to enjoy on such a great piece of architecture.”

“Youve obviously put the wreath over the O and another wreath over the U cause its kind of O shaped, but with the tree, you didnt give a flying f— because you put the A-shaped tree over the N,” Windelspecht told NJ.com.

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Windelspecht started a petition that amassed over 2,800 signatures. He said Monday he thought it would be a Christmas miracle if anyone actually did anything about his Holland Tunnel rant.

"Everyone just thought I was crazy," he said. "They were probably right."

Even Budweiser joined in the debate. The company tweeted a picture of its Newark brewery supporting Windelspecht. The picture shows a wreath over the "U" and a tree over the "E" in Budweiser.

We stand with @WhosCory. This is what our Newark Brewery will look like until they #MoveThatTree. #TunnelNotTonnelpic.twitter.com/WkRtmMxvQj

— Budweiser (@budweiserusa) December 12, 2018

The Port Authority's poll offered four options:

  • Leave the decorations as they are
  • Move the tree to hang over the “A” in the word “HOLLAND”
  • Move the tree to hang over the “A” and remove the second wreath thats now over the “U” in the world “TUNNEL”
  • Add a tree to hang over the “A”, but keep and adjust the existing tree to make the decorations symmetrical

Windelspecht said Monday, "I'm happy we made a change. I'm happy people had fun with it."

"I'm going to smile every time I go through this, knowing we did something cool."

The decorations are handmade by the Port Authority maintenance department, and are freshly made with real branches each season for commuters to enjoy — and analyze.

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USA Today

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