According to the Wall Street Journal, it costs up to $ 5.1 mil. per year if you want to rent a billboard that lights up “The center of the universe”
Today, New York’s Times Square is a gigantic commercial intersection, a brightly illuminated hub of the Broadway Theater District and one of the world’s busiest pedestrian intersections. It is a major center of the world’s entertainment industry, located in Midtown Manhattan at the junction of Broadway and Seventh Avenue, stretching from West 42nd to West 47th Streets. “Longacre Square” as it was once called, got renamed to Times Square in 1904, by a proclamation of Mayor George B. McClellan, Jr. at the urging of Adolph Ochs, the owner and publisher of the New York Times. The northern end later became “Duffy Square”. After Rudy Giuliani’s “disneyfication” and commercialisation of Times Square (and in fact the whole city), things radically changed and “profit-only” started to rule what was once known as “The Deuce”.
Yet you can still feel the aura and atmosphere “The Deuce” once had back in the 70’s, 80’s and 90’s, where hustlers, pimps, whores, artists, musicians as well as other New Yorkers of all couleur, populated the square and the surrounding streets, theatres, peep shows, bars and clubs. As we know there are always two sides to the (25 cent) coin. It’s highly regrettable that under the pretext of “cleaning up” Times Square, the entire peninsula of Manhattan and later on all five boroughs, were brutally stripped of what should have become a cultural heritage. Practically all subcultural institutions got closed down and subculture itself, was criminalized. Once again people trusted the true criminals who dress as politicians, aiming at only a single goal. And that had nothing to do with increasing the quality of life for New Yorkers but everything with flushing more money into their own pockets.