The lights went out in Hollywood.

On his last day in office, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti signed an executive directive to launch an 18-month pilot program to allow for the lighting of the Hollywood sign.

A mere 10 days later, his successor, Mayor Karen Bass, put the kibosh on the order, canceling the plan before it took effect 15 days after it was published, the Los Angeles Times reported.

Bass rescinded the pilot over concerns about its legality, spokesperson Zach Seidl told the outlet.

The debate over illuminating the iconic sign, erected in 1923, has been a contentious one for decades. In fact, when Garcetti signed the order on Dec. 11, just months prior to its centennial, there was immediate backlash in its surrounding neighborhood.

The sign was originally built by then-L.A. Times publisher Harry Chandler as a temporary 18-month advertisement for his real estate development, “Hollywoodland.” The “land” was removed in 1949 when the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce stepped in to care for the sign, which is on land that had since been made part of a park.

The iconic sign, which was erected in 1923, will soon turn 100.
Getty Images for The Hollywood S
Workers spray-paint the Hollywood sign
Bass reportedly rescinded the pilot over concerns about its legality.
Getty Images for The Hollywood S

It was lit for decades, but the lights went off when the sign fell into disrepair in the late 1970s and the nonprofit Hollywood Sign Trust was created to maintain it.

The nonprofit tested out new technology to help reduce the impact that new lights might have on residents and wildlife in the area earlier this year.

“As the centennial of the Hollywood Sign approaches in the coming months, it would
seem fitting to build on these successful efforts to illuminate our city’s most famous
landmark,” Garcetti stated in the directive.


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