Remember the good old days when radio promoted itself on nearly every billboard you could see from the highway? iHeartMedia is advertising on one of the most iconic billboards in the country, on top of the old Ruppert Ice House, overlooking the Triboro/RFK Bridge leading into Manhattan.
The billboard displays the iHeartRadio logo and is one of only eight brands to grace this historic billboard over the last 80 years. The billboard is over 8,000 square feet (the size of 12 traditional roadside billboards) and is visible for miles from various vantage points.
In addition to the iHeartRadio logo, the billboard will display a digital LED screen that promotes iHeartMedia’s New York City stations — Z100, Power 105, KTU, Lite FM, Q104.3, and WOR — and upcoming events, such as the iHeartRadio Jingle Ball Tour and the iHeartRadio Music Awards.
Clear Channel Outdoor Americas has invested $2 million in the billboard’s renovation over the last year and worked with officials to secure its grandfathered status in 2015. This billboard, and the building it stands atop, date back to the 1920s. “Given iHeartMedia’s huge audience, unparalleled national and local reach and profile, it’s only fitting that the company would have the most historic and viewed sign in New York City,” said Scott Wells, Chief Executive Officer of Clear Channel Outdoor Americas.
The building was constructed for Jacob Ruppert, who owned the Yankees, built Yankee Stadium, and brought Babe Ruth to the team. The Ruppert family owned and operated Rupert Beer and Knickerbocker Beer and originally used the building to store ice and keep beer cold prior to the refrigeration era. Ruppert Beer was the first brand to adorn this now iconic sign, maintaining its presence there from 1936 to 1952.
Each brand that followed in Rupert’s footprint for the next 80 years held claim to the billboard for nearly a decade or more. These include: Knickerbocker Beer (1952-1962), City Services Gasoline (aka Citgo, 1962- early 70s), Kent Cigarettes (early 70s – late 70s), Golden Lights Cigarettes (early 80s – late 80s), Newport Cigarettes (early 90s – 1999), HISTORY Channel (2000-2015), and now iHeartMedia (2016 – ).