Weather beacon

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"Weatherball" redirects here. For the antenna-protecting structure, see Radome.
Weather beacon barometer atop the Westpac Place building in Sydney

A weather beacon is a beacon that indicates the local weather forecast in a code of colored or flashing lights. Often, a short poem or jingle accompanies the code to make it easier to remember. (example, example 2)

The beacon is usually on the roof of a tall building in a central business district, but some are attached to towers. The beacons are most commonly owned by financial services companies and television stations and are part of advertising and public relations programs. They provide a very basic forecast for the general public and not as an aid to navigation.

In addition to displaying weather forecasts, some weather beacons have been used to signal victory or defeat for a professional sports home team.

History[edit]

The first attempt to create a weather beacon as a form of advertising was from Douglas Leigh, who, in 1941, arranged a lighting scheme for the Empire State Building to display a weather forecast code with a decoder to be packaged with Coca-Cola bottles. The plan was never implemented because of the attack on Pearl Harbor later that year.[1] Mr. Leigh resurrected his idea in Minneapolis in October 1949 with the Northwestern National Bank Weatherball.[2]

In Australia, the Mutual Life and Citizens insurance company installed weather beacons atop its buildings in 1957 and '58.[3]

Weather beacons were most popular during the 1950s and '60s.

Similar devices[edit]

List of weather beacons[edit]

Australia[edit]

  • Western Australia

Austria[edit]

  • Wetterleuchtturm, Ringturm, Vienna

Belgium[edit]

Canada[edit]

Denmark[edit]

Finland[edit]

Germany[edit]

Japan[edit]

Turkey[edit]

United Kingdom[edit]

  • Light Towers Project (Coventry Point, Mercia House, Hillman House), Coventry[28][29][30]
  • Castlemilk Lighting Project, Glasgow

United States[edit]

  • Florida
    • American Federal Savings and Loan Association weather ball, Fidelity Storage building, 53 W. Jackson St., Orlando (1963 – 1974; dismantled)[35][36]
    • First Federal Savings & Loan, Fourth Street and Central Avenue, St. Petersburg (1953 – 6 April 1970)
  • Nebraska
  • South Dakota
    • KELO weatherball, Sherman Hotel, Aberdeen (dismantled)[104]
    • First National Bank, Pierre
    • National Bank of South Dakota (now US Bank), 141 N. Main Avenue, Sioux Falls (non-functioning)[105]
      • East Branch, East 10th & Omaha, Sioux Falls (dismantled)
      • South Branch, 33rd & Minnesota, Sioux Falls (non-functioning)[106][107]
      • Sunset Branch, West 41st & Louise Avenue (dismantled)
    • KDLO weatherball tower, 421 9th Av SE, Watertown (dismantled)

Gallery[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Manhattan Users Guide
  2. ^ "Remembering a beloved icon", Northwestern Financial Review
  3. ^ a b c Federation and Meteorology, Memories of the Bureau, 1946 to 1962, page 1032
  4. ^ MLC Building, North Sydney
  5. ^ Photo of Westpac Place: View of the weather beacon displaying its red light panels
  6. ^ Brisbane's weather beacon: new bulbs needed! :: ABC Brisbane
  7. ^ Brisbane's Weather Beacon » ABC Brisbane
  8. ^ Hitachi Building, Brisbane
  9. ^ Hitachi Building Weather Beacon RIP sur Flickr : partage de photos !
  10. ^ Weather beacon to be given the flick – Queensland – BrisbaneTimes
  11. ^ McCarthy, John (19 November 2007). "Weather beacon to be turned off". The Courier-Mail. 
  12. ^ http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=casRsothePY
  13. ^ http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nTGwaUziEvQ
  14. ^ SkyscraperCity – View Single Post – Brisbane 1960's in Colour
  15. ^ MLC Building, Adelaide
  16. ^ Lloyd, Tim (30 March 2007). "City beacon stands tall". The Advertiser. 
  17. ^ 303 Collins Street, Melbourne
  18. ^ "Who's afraid of Red, Green and Blue" – an urban installation by LAb[au] on Brussels Dexia Tower
  19. ^ Dexiatower
  20. ^ Coolopolis: Montreal 50s SKYTOWER woot-woot!!!!
  21. ^ 505 Boulevard René-Lévesque Ouest, Montreal
  22. ^ 2,640 Colored Bulbs Will Predict Weather, The Gazette, 13 April 1956, p. 23
  23. ^ Montreal this morning, The Gazette, 14 Jan. 1976, p. 3
  24. ^ Correction, The Gazette, 17 Jan. 1976, p. 4 (beacon to be demolished, not building)
  25. ^ STAWAG – Die Wettersäule
  26. ^ http://www.city.osaka.jp/english/osaka_walking/lv1.html
  27. ^ Beyazit Tower
  28. ^ icCoventry – Put that light out!
  29. ^ Coventry Design Awards 2001 – Three Towers Lighting Project : Hillman House, Corporation Street
  30. ^ http://www.mondiale.co.uk/mondoarc/coventry/coventry.html
  31. ^ Mattei Building, Fresno
  32. ^ News10.net – News10 Weather Tower Key
  33. ^ http://www.socketsite.com/ORH%20Weather%20Beacon%20Card.jpg
  34. ^ Nolte, Carl (8 December 2008). "Lights atop One Rincon Hill signal S.F. weather". San Francisco Chronicle. pp. B–1. Retrieved 13 December 2008. 
  35. ^ Dickinson, Joy Wallace (7 April 2002). "Short Play Brings Rainmaker's 1939 Tale Back to Life". Orlando Sentinel. 
  36. ^ Orlando Sentinel – History of the Church Street Station Area by
  37. ^ Bell Savings Building, Chicago
  38. ^ Clocks of Chicago 1: Bell Federal
  39. ^ Weather Bell sur Flickr : partage de photos !
  40. ^ Weather Bell
  41. ^ Clocks of Chicago 1: Bell Federal Savings
  42. ^ Memories Of Marina City
  43. ^ KCCI Weather Beacon – Des Moines Weather News Story – KCCI Des Moines
  44. ^ Warmer Weather Ahead sur Flickr : partage de photos !
  45. ^ Colder Weather in Sight sur Flickr : partage de photos !
  46. ^ Channel 9 KCAU-TV Weather Ball
  47. ^ "What Do The Weather Lights Mean?". WLWT.com. Hearst Television. 17 April 2009. Retrieved 2 September 2010. 
  48. ^ 1952 The Falstaff Weather Ball is First Lit
  49. ^ http://clarionherald.org/20010301/stall.htm
  50. ^ The Urban Conservancy › News Roundup › Falstaff Brewery complex sold for $1.1 million (27 Jun 2006)
  51. ^ Falstaff Brewery – New Orleans Louisiana sur Flickr : partage de photos !
  52. ^ New Orleans CityBusiness – The Business Newspaper of Metropolitan New Orleans
  53. ^ New Orleans, Louisiana Daily Photo
  54. ^ Nostalgia: Falstaff Weather Ball
  55. ^ Tower shines after 50 years: 10/1/00
  56. ^ http://www.mlive.com/business/mid-michigan/index.ssf/2013/11/watch_as_two_women_with_strong.html
  57. ^ http://www.wzzm13.com/weather/weatherball.asp
  58. ^ Grand Rapids Business Journal – Weather Ball History
  59. ^ weather ball sur Flickr : partage de photos !
  60. ^ Valley City Sign
  61. ^ The Technical History of WEBC Radio: Chapter Five
  62. ^ New Header
  63. ^ Guided by History: Weatherball
  64. ^ MNHS.ORG | Exhibits | Weather Permitting
  65. ^ History of the NWS in the Twin Cities – At the Airport
  66. ^ A History of Minneapolis: Banking and Finance
  67. ^ "Remembering a beloved icon". Northwestern Financial Review. 2001. [dead link]
  68. ^ MHS Visual Resource Database Image
  69. ^ http://books.google.com/books?id=Z6k2sY7AeCwC&pg=PA121&dq=weatherball#PPA121,M1
  70. ^ http://www.kchistory.org/cdm4/item_viewer.php?CISOROOT=/Askren&CISOPTR=58&CISOBOX=1&REC=7
  71. ^ http://www.hoachorus.com/harmonotes/Dec05Harmonotes.pdf
  72. ^ Pershing Building, Kansas City
  73. ^ http://www.terracottalofts.com/bldghistory.asp
  74. ^ Blacktie-StLouis | PREMIERE EVENTS | The 8-foot, 1200-pound neon ball sits on top of a 50-foot rotating tower and can be seen over a 10-mile radius when lit
  75. ^ Terra Cotta Lofts, St. Louis
  76. ^ Weather Ball 2 sur Flickr : partage de photos !
  77. ^ Weather Ball sur Flickr : partage de photos !
  78. ^ US Bank Tower, Billings
  79. ^ Helena_Last_Chance_Gulch
  80. ^ Dunlap, David W. (4 February 2008). "No More MONY in the Midtown Skyline". The New York Times. 
  81. ^ Gothamist: Find Another Weather Forecast
  82. ^ Mutual of New York Building, New York City
  83. ^ http://townofmanteo.com/index.asp?Type=B_BASIC&SEC={887829A3-F959-42C2-95C7-248BCDF8D423}&DE={82D8218D-C660-4DA1-89F4-E6303D384BA8}
  84. ^ Burleigh County : General Information
  85. ^ Bismarck-Mandan Blog – Weather Beacon: been there, done that, got the t-shirt
  86. ^ Save the Weather Beacon! You can help!
  87. ^ Chiquita Center, Cincinnati
  88. ^ Lisa Miller (producer) (1987). WKRC-TV Gets Weather Beacon (Television advertisement). Cincinnati, Ohio: WKRC-TV. ♪ If you wanna know / what the weather will be / just look up to the top / of the Chiquita Building. ♪ 
  89. ^ http://books.google.com/books?id=4dz2XwSzSKEC&pg=PA23&lpg=PA23&dq=%22weather+beacon%22+%22oklahoma+city%22&source=web&ots=Wc-AsNw0-b&sig=6GVF-IjtOoYxsQG8muL2OKXZ7uU#PPA23,M1
  90. ^ Tulsa TV Weather
  91. ^ Tulsa Historical Society | Learn | Exhibits | Historic Sites
  92. ^ 320 S. Boston 3 sur Flickr : partage de photos !
  93. ^ http://www.pdxmagazine.com/Nov_issue_06.pdf
  94. ^ Standard Insurance Plaza, Portland
  95. ^ "Sign in to OregonLive.com". The Oregonian. 
  96. ^ Downtown Portland from our window by Gallun : Weather Underground
  97. ^ officeflowers sur Flickr : partage de photos !
  98. ^ http://www.carnegiesciencecenter.org/default.aspx?pageId=47
  99. ^ New twist on an old landmark – Pittsburgh Tribune-Review
  100. ^ Gulf Building, Pittsburgh
  101. ^ http://www.cparchives.com/archive.cfm?type=You%20Had%20to%20Ask&action=getComplete&ref=2497
  102. ^ http://www.readingeagle.com/article.aspx?id=126076
  103. ^ http://www.co.berks.pa.us/commissioners/cwp/view.asp?A=11&Q=490871
  104. ^ http://www.topix.net/content/kri/1954371012356518807938181913012655219491
  105. ^ US Bank Building, Sioux Falls
  106. ^ [1]
  107. ^ [2]
  108. ^ 28 January 2007 – Provident: a Beacon in the Chattanooga Community – Memories – Chattanoogan.com
  109. ^ Maclellan Building, Chattanooga
  110. ^ http://www.nashvillewebreview.com/automat/nashville/popular_buildings/LandC/landc_brochure/LandC2.html.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  111. ^ http://www.cardcow.com/21559/life-and-casualty-tower-nashville-us-state-town-views-tennessee-nashville/
  112. ^ http://www.dallasnews.com/sharedcontent/dws/news/localnews/stories/DN-mercantileclock_13met.ART.State.Edition1.454c55b.html
  113. ^ http://www.snarkymalarkey.com/?p=415
  114. ^ Mercantile clock to tick once again | Dallas Morning News | News for Dallas, Texas | Steve Brown | Real Estate | Business Columnist | Dallas Morning News
  115. ^ The Center for American History
  116. ^ ImageShack – Hosting :: 6006032fa.jpg
  117. ^ Travis Tower, Houston
  118. ^ ImageShack – Hosting :: 6006085yc.jpg
  119. ^ http://www.wxresearch.org/newsletter/FALL95.TXT
  120. ^ SixFlagsHouston.com | Photos :: Historical Photos :: globe
  121. ^ Drury Plaza Hotel River Walk, San Antonio, Texas
  122. ^ Drury Plaza Hotel- San Antonio Riverwalk, San Antonio
  123. ^ KSL 5 Eyewitness Weather Tower at Trolley Square – Utah News from KSL-TV, Salt Lake City, Utah
  124. ^ http://deseretnews.com/article/1,5143,695216239,00.html
  125. ^ ksl.com – Historic weather tower lights up skyline
  126. ^ http://www.findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_qn4196/is_20060308/ai_n16164672.  Missing or empty |title= (help)[dead link]
  127. ^ JS Online: Galvin envisioned weather flame on old Gas Co. building
  128. ^ Wisconsin Gas Building sur Flickr : partage de photos !