Thursday, May 17, 2012

The End of an Era: Gas Lamps Go the Way of the Dinosaur

There is no other city in the world that has more gas lamps in use than Berlin. However, starting in June, the city will begin replacing the gas lamps with more efficient and economic fluorescent lighting. Of Berlin's 43,500 gas lamps, only 5 percent will be preserved as a sort of monument to 19th century technology.

Despite protests from city preservation groups, the city decided to go ahead and replace the gas lamps. In only a few areas of the city will the gas lamps continue to glow (parts of Charlottenburg and Frohnau). 

Call me a romantic, but I will miss the gas lamps. At dusk, you can hear a slight hiss as the yellow light comes on. They have a sort of film noir quality that's reminiscent of old black and white movies. 

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