Part of the old Schrafft Center sign, left, is carried away on a truck as workers, above, help hoist the new Schrafft sign atop the Charlestown building yesterday.

Thursday, June 15, 2017

A replica of the landmark illuminated Schrafft’s candy company sign arrived yesterday for installation on top of The Schrafft Center in Charlestown.

Building owner The Flatley Co. tapped New Bedford’s Poyant Signs to create a new, more energy-efficient LED-lit sign to replace the aging neon one that graced three sides of the clock tower of the former candy factory built in 1928.

“From afar, you’re not even going to be able to tell the difference,” Flatley CEO John Roche said. “It’s exactly what was on top of the clock tower. We realize it’s an iconic sign, and we were very, very sensitive to recreating what was up there.”

The old neon sign, estimated to be more than 80 years old, was taken down about two weeks ago for replacement because it was beyond repair, according to Roche. Letters would go dark on rainy days. “It was getting unsafe and had rust on it,” Roche said.

The fate of the old sign is up in the air, although salvaging a couple of letters for display is one option being considered by Flatley.

“We’ve had some inquiries from people who are interested in it,” he said. “We operate … under a license agreement with the people that have the trademark on the Schrafft’s name, so we do have limitations on what we can do with it.”

The new sign is part of The Flatley Co.’s rebranding of the Schrafft’s building as The Schrafft Center complex along with the buildings at 425 and 465 Medford St.


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