NewsPalm Beach CountyRegion C Palm Beach County


Peanut Island, JFK bunker restoration plans underway

Pricey restoration project will take 2 to 3 years to complete
Posted at 7:49 AM, Feb 15, 2022
and last updated 2022-02-15 09:12:53-05

PALM BEACH COUNTY, Fla. — Peanut Island is home to a bunker built for former President John F. Kennedy in the 1960s and Coast Guard houses built in the 1930s. But decades of aging and several large storms have made it unsafe to visit the historic sites.

Palm Beach County is working to save it.

HIDDEN GEM: John F. Kennedy Bunker

Eric Call, the director of the Parks and Recreation Department, said the county is taking over the lease for the land and plans to spend the next couple years restoring.

Call said mold and an unstable structure are making it unsafe to go inside the bunker. He said the air quality is not breathable.

Although it's a costly project, with a $6-8 million price tag, Call said their phones are ringing off the hook with people excited about the news.

"They're excited. It's been closed for some period of time," Call said. "Obviously, it received some damage from some of the storms and hurricanes and those types of things, and we're working to secure the dollars to make the restorations necessary."

They are also seeking funding from state and local entities to pay for the restoration.

Palm Beach County is conducting assessments on the structures and plans to get to work on construction in the next few months.

Call said it will likely be two to three years before the Kennedy Bunker will be open to the public. Once it is open, he said, the county plans to offer guided tours for a small fee.