Progress Update

June 25, 2024 — With the winter rains finally over, work is beginning in earnest on the restoration of Pigeon Point lighthouse. The crew was able to take advantage of the rains to prepare the interior of the structure for hazardous materials abatement, particularly lead and asbestos, by wrapping the stairs, landings and floors. Two rings of bracket scaffolding were installed, one just below the lower gallery and the other around the top portion of the lantern room. 

Behind the scenes, the contractor has been submitting discreet plans and protocols to address various elements of the project, from the hazmat protocols to materials specifications to procedures for conducting the investigative probing. This process will continue throughout the construction project to inform and guide the work as it is performed.
In the past few weeks, full scaffolding covering the body of the tower has been installed to provide for lead (paint) removal in a systemized section-by-section manner. Also, preliminary investigative probing has begun to determine the condition of the ironwork and brick and mortar in the upper interior and lower exterior belt courses.
The state’s design team met onsite with the construction crew in mid-June to discuss the condition of the ironwork and possible methods of proceeding. They also looked at options for removing the lead-based paint on the exterior and interior of the brickwork. The contractor expects to begin selective demolition in early July.
Stay tuned for more updates as the work continues. Restoration Update Details June 2024

Crane reaching top of tower at Pigeon Point

Useful Links
Check this link for periodic updates: 
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Our Valued Partners
Coastside State Parks Association – 
Friends of Santa Cruz State Parks – 
Peninsula Open Space Trust – 
California State Parks Foundation – 
California Lighthouse Society – 

Read past restoration progress updates
View photos of damage to be repaired


Projects on the Horizon

Upper Portion of Tower

Upper Portion of Tower Architectural Sketch

Tower (Upper Portion) –  In 2019, the State allocated $9+ million to restore the upper portion of the tower. Because of COVID-19 and the 2020 wildfires, the bid package was never released. This work is being addressed in the new $18+ million bid package being developed for the entire tower. Work will include the lantern room, the decks and railings, the upper belt course and masonry.

(Sketch courtesy of Architectural Resources Group)



Recently Completed Ground-Level Projects

Fog Signal Building – The exterior of the fog signal building was completely refurbished. This included restoration of the fog horn trumpets on the ocean side of the building as well as stabilizing the observation deck.

Before After

Fog Signal Building Before Renovation

Fog Signal Building After Renovation

Keepers Office & Oil Room
– At the base of the tower, the small Keepers office and adjacent oil room received lead abatement, painting and a new roof. The front door and windows were also refurbished. This allowed limited public tours to take visitors into the first level and tower base.

Before After

Keepers Office and Oil Room Before Renovation

Keepers Office and Oil Room After Renovation


Oil Bunker – The 1905 oil bunker received a complete makeover, including lead abatement and painting. New interpretive exhibits were installed expanding upon those in the fog signal building. New benches were also placed outside the bunker for visitors. 

Before: Oil Bunker Exterior After: Oil Bunker Exterior

Outside of Oil Bunker before Renovation

Outside of Oil Bunker after Renovation

Before: Oil Bunker Interior After: Oil Bunker Interior

Inside of Oil Bunker Before Renovation


Inside of Oil Bunker After Renovatioin


Picket Fence – A 200-foot stretch of dilapidated fence along the south bluff of the lighthouse was rebuilt by volunteers using donated materials.

Before After
Picket Fence Before Renovation Picket Fence After Renovation