Current lighting schedule • 2017
August 15 Saffron/White/Green - India Independence Day (flag colors of India)
About City Hall's exterior lighting
Every evening at sunset, over 220 state-of-the-art LED lighting fixtures illuminate City Hall's exterior. Normally, a soft white glow shows off the play of light and shadow on the full façade and dome. Frequently, special plaza façade lighting schemes honor or celebrate events, seasons, and holidays.
Until 2016, the lights were standard incandescent bulbs. Changing their colors was expensive and time-consuming; two to three building staff members, plus a crew of four staff from a lighting contractor, spent hours crawling in and out of office windows and onto the rooftop to install colored theatrical gels on each of the 220 fixtures, even in bad weather. For removal of the gels, the whole process happened in reverse.
Power use is now much lower, and with just an occasional cleaning, maintaining the fixtures is much easier: LED bulbs last as long as 20 years.
News about City Hall lighting
- Who’s Behind the Colorful Lights at San Francisco City Hall? KQED - 4/27/2017
- High-Tech Light System, San Francisco Chronicle - 2/6/2017
- Philips Color Kinetics LED Lighting Systems
- San Francisco City Hall Centennial Celebration - 6/19/2015
- Willie Brown's City Hall Lights Guessing Game, SFist.com - 12/01/2014
Please note, the CIty Hall lighting schedule is subject to change.