NEW YORK (FOX 5 NY) - For the last week, Metro-North Railroad commuters looking up to check train times on the big board in Grand Central have encountered two new very bright LED screens.
Some argue the darker, duller, older boards fit better with this century-old terminal's beaux-arts aesthetic.
Historian Anthony Robins wrote the book "Grand Central Terminal: 100 Years of a New York Landmark." During our interview, he struggled to look away from the light of the new boards.
"Oh, my gosh. Another screen," he said. "I can't stand it. It's a change."
We mostly struggled to find people mourning the departure of the old boards, which aren't original either.
"You want the original boards? Those were written in chalk in the Biltmore Room until 1967," Robins said.
More than 50 years ago, Grand Central replaced chalk with the clickety-clacking boards, which the current old boards sought to model when they replaced those spinning letters and numbers with the darker screens in 1996.
"I don't think it's an issue of historic preservation," Robins said. "This is something new replacing something not quite as new."
In a statement, Metro-North President Catherine Rinaldi wrote, "We're thrilled that at Grand Central, this means brighter, clearer screens that let us provide more information about each train and give us the flexibility to make changes in real time in the event of a service disruption."
Grand Central plans to replace its other big boards, gate boards, and other digital displays and monitors around the terminal in the coming months.
"These will be replaced in 10 years and maybe they'll look a little better because people will remember the voices that were raised this time by people who noticed," Robins said.