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Sanibel lighthouse repairs are now completed, but what's next for the beach park?

Posted at 4:58 PM, Jul 06, 2024

SANIBEL, Fla. — Repairs to the historic Sanibel Lighthouse have been completed, and the scaffolding has been removed. A fresh coat of paint was added to the exterior and interior. The repairs and new paint job cost over one million dollars, with insurance covering approximately three-quarters of the cost. A grant of over one hundred thousand dollars from the Florida Lighthouse Association also funded the interior repairs.


Before Hurricane Ian, Lighthouse Beach Park included more than just the lighthouse, so I asked the city if the surrounding buildings were also making a return.

Sanibel Lighthouse Beach Park prior to Hurricane Ian

Eric Jackson, Sanibel Public Information Officer, explained that the next phase of the project will involve seeking public input to determine what the community wants for the park.

That public input varied when we asked surrounding visitors, what should be added to Lighthouse Beach Park?

Some residents preferred to leave the area in its natural state, to preserve the beauty and tranquility of the untouched environment.

One visitor commented, "I think they should leave it as is. Let nature do its thing and just keep it beautiful, protected, and safe."

Another beachgoer shared a similar thought, stating, "I'm okay with it being nature for now."

However, not everyone favored preserving the park in its current state. Some residents expressed a desire for added conveniences to enhance their beach experience. Suggestions included a food truck area, small restaurants, and picnic tables.

One visitor suggested, "Maybe a little restaurant, a place to get some snacks and juice," while another mentioned, "Restaurants and more places like picnic tables."

Despite these differing opinions, the future of Lighthouse Beach Park remains uncertain.

No timeline has been established for the addition of amenities or the return of the pier.

The city has indicated that it is unlikely to construct buildings close to the water but will consider public feedback before making any final decisions.