You Can Buy A Piece Of The Kings Cross Coke Sign
After 42 years the Coca-Cola sign that illuminated Sydney's Kings Cross and became a symbol of the party precinct is being sold off letter-by-letter to help the homeless.
The billboard which shone down on Darlinghurst Road will be replaced by an electronic billboard that will light up in mid-September.
Coca-Cola plans to sell the giant white letters from the original sign and donate the proceeds to local charity the Wayside Chapel.
"We knew we had to find a way to keep a part of the old sign alive. What better way than to help a great local charity like the Wayside Chapel in the process?" Coca-Cola South Pacific president Roberto Mercade said.
Wayside Chapel has been supporting homeless people in Kings Cross and across Sydney for more than half a century.
"Kings Cross has been a destination for a good time - some crash and some restart and find a new beginning," Wayside Chapel's Reverend Graham Long said.
"Almost entirely funded by community support, Wayside is delighted to use funds from the sale of the old Coke sign, to help some who are on their way to a better life."
Work on the sign has been closely watched by Potts Point and Kings Cross Heritage Conservation Society president Andrew Woodhouse, who said it needed to be conducted carefully in case it damaged the original mural hidden underneath.
The mural was painted by Roger Foley, under his alias Ellis D Fogg, in 1973.
"The current sign is not the original sign ... the original 1970s heritage mural needs to be preserved," Mr Woodhouse said.
Bidders will be able to grab the individual letters of the sign during a five-day online auction starting on September 7.
Coca-Cola said it was hard to estimate the price tag for the sign with reserves starting at $100 per letter but similar auctions ranged into hundreds of thousands of dollars.
The Sydney Olympic rings that adorned the Sydney Harbour Bridge during the 2000 games sold for $26,000 in 2015, while Los Angeles' famous Hollywood sign went for $US450,000 a decade earlier.
The auction will be open to the public via a Bid for Good eBay website.