Woodstock gets new street signs; old ones for sale

Woodstock street signs, old and new

Woodstockers may have noticed a recent change in the street signs and wondered what happened to the italic lettering unique to the town.

The old signs, designed by artist John Pike, do not comply anymore with the Federal Highway Administration’s Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices (MUTCD), which sets specific guidelines for the letter height, background color and reflectivity.

So what happened to the old signs?

The town decided to sell them for $35 each, suggesting them as gifts, perhaps for those who grew up on a particular street and want a piece of history.


A post on the town’s Facebook page drew a lot of attention and most signs sold quickly.

But Deputy Town Clerk Lynn Sehwerert said some are still available. Most in the center of town are long gone, but some such as Hillcrest Avenue (now Sgt. Richard Quinn Drive) and Pine Grove Street may still be available if you act quickly. About 25 streets were still up for grabs as of late morning on December 4.

The town has been replacing signs with the newer style when they are damaged, but all signs in town were changed during a recent effort.

The MUTCD specifies street name signs on local roads of 25 mph or less should have upper-case letters of at least 4 inches and lower-case letters of at least 3 inches. On roads with speed limits less than 40 mph, it’s 6 inches for upper-case and 5 inches for lower-case. 

Directionals, like East or West, and street types like Rd or Dr should have 3-inch upper-case letters and 2.25-inch lower-case letters.

Background colors can be brown, green, white or blue.

The MUTCD also requires the signs be reflective or illuminated both day and night. The Pike-style signs were not reflective.

To find out what signs are available, visit woodstockny.org or contact the Town Clerk’s office at (845) 679-2113, extension 14.

There are 4 comments

  1. JR

    Phooey. More homogenization. Increased sterility. “I am Nomad. Sterilize. Sterilize.” And, the worst part of this is that distinct signs are easier to read – easier to take note of. What – everyone isn’t using their blasted GPS anyway? What an astounding waste of money with no increased safety.

  2. Roadshow Magic.

    This is not an improvement.

    John Pike’s signs were smart and beautiful, they brightened and lifted the environment. They quietly proclaimed that one was now in Woodstock; a unique place with a breathing artistic sensibility, a place where the arts lived and thrived.

    By sharp contrast the new signs are the same bland signs one sees everywhere else. Common fare in places where the arts are not known, or welcomed. Woodstock is diminished by these new signs. An exception should have been made. John Pike’s great old signs were the right ones for Woodstock. Bureaucrats be damned.

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