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Cape Hatteras Lighthouse getting LED lights in $19.2 million facelift

BUXTON, N.C. (WITN) – The Cape Hatteras Lighthouse is moving into the 21st century with LED lights replacing incandescent bulbs that have lit it for the past 153 years.

It’s all part of a major $19.2 million facelift for the historic light on the Outer Banks.

Stone & Lime Historic Restoration Services, Inc. will rehabilitate the interior and restore the exterior of the 155-year-old lighthouse which is listed as a National Historic Landmark.

Other work will include repainting the inside and outside, restoring missing architectural components, and installing non-corrosive metal on the lantern balcony.

The Cape Hatteras National Seashore says contractors will remove the original first-order Fresnel lens and install a replica lens that will be the same size and overall appearance as the original. The big difference will be that LED lights will be used inside the lens.

Because of the project, visitors can expect scaffolding to surround the lighthouse for much of the project, while lighthouse climbing opportunities will likely not resume until the summer of 2026.

Another $3.2 million contract will build a 1.25 mile-long 10-12-foot-wide paved multi-use pathway from Highway 12 to the Cape Hatteras Light Station and Old Lighthouse Beach Access. That is expected to be open by next summer.


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