Rain seeps into Coit Tower, but damage to murals is averted

Mike Koozmin/The S.F. ExaminerCover ’em up: Plastic sheeting covers a mural where a leak believed to be caused by recent rainstorms allowed water into Coit Tower.

Mike Koozmin/The S.F. ExaminerCover ’em up: Plastic sheeting covers a mural where a leak believed to be caused by recent rainstorms allowed water into Coit Tower.

Recent rainstorms have aggravated leaks at Coit Tower, where roof repairs were already under way to address the longstanding leakage problem and protect the historic murals inside the cylindrical San Francisco landmark.
But thanks to quick action by Recreation and Park Department staff, city officials say, damage to the murals was averted.

Plastic covers were placed under ceiling and wall leaks to divert water away from the 1930s-era labor-themed renderings, which have suffered separate water damage in the past, making it a touchy subject for city officials charged with maintaining it.

“Let me be clear,” Arts Commission spokeswoman Kate Patterson said. “The murals have not sustained any damage whatsoever as a result of this leak.”

The conditions at Coit Tower prompted a June ballot measure to support spending-priority changes for the tower. Just before the measure was approved by voters, Mayor Ed Lee announced $1.5 million in funding for major fixes to the 210-foot structure atop Telegraph Hill.

Workers are scheduled to finish the full slate of repairs in the spring, but they started with the roof in advance of the rainy season and plan to finish sealing the building off from rain by the end of the month.

Recreation and Park Department spokeswoman Sarah Ballard confirmed that the murals were not damaged. She said no cost estimate was available for the overall water damage to the ceiling and roof.

Jon Golinger, a Telegraph Hill activist who pushed the ballot measure last summer, said he was pleased with the prompt response to the leak.

“I think it’s a sea change in both agencies in how they respond,” Golinger said. “This is a reminder that risks are ever present to the murals.”

dschreiber@sfexaminer.com

Arts CommissionBay Area NewsLocalneighborhoodsRecreation and Park Department

If you find our journalism valuable and relevant, please consider joining our Examiner membership program.
Find out more at www.sfexaminer.com/join/

Just Posted

After the pandemic hit, Twin Peaks Boulevard was closed to vehicle traffic, a situation lauded by open space advocates. (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)
New proposal to partially reopen Twin Peaks to vehicles pleases no one

Neighbors say closure brought crime into residential streets, while advocates seek more open space

Protesters rally at the site of a proposed affordable housing project at 2550 Irving St. in the Sunset District on Saturday, Jan. 23, 2021. (Ming Vong/S.F. Examiner)
Sunset District affordable housing discussion flooded with ‘scare tactics and hysteria’

Project would provide 100 units, some of which would be designated for formerly homeless families

Members of the Sheriff’s Department command staff wore masks at a swearing-in ceremony for Assistant Sheriff Tanzanika Carter. One attendee later tested positive. 
Courtesy SFSD
Sheriff sees increase in COVID-19 cases as 3 captains test positive

Command staff among 10 infected members in past week

Rainy weather is expected in the coming week. (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)
Rainstorms, potential atmospheric river expected to drench Bay Area in coming week

By Eli Walsh Bay City News Foundation Multiple rainstorms, cold temperatures some… Continue reading

U.S. Poet Laureate Amanda Gorman’s powerful reading was among the highlights of Inauguration Day. (Kent Nishimura/Los Angeles Times/TNS)
Inauguration shines light in this never-ending shade

Here’s to renewal and resolve in 2021 and beyond

Most Read