Byline: Associated Press
GOLDEN GATE NATIONAL RECREATION AREA (AP) — A historic World War II-era gun battery that once guarded San Francisco Bay has been restored as an exhibit that showcases the region’s military past, showing what was once the country’s first line of defense against a West Coast invasion.
The U.S. Army built Battery Townsley into a Marin County hillside more than 70 years ago, to house weapons that could lob 2-ton shells 25 miles. The series of underground tunnels and concrete gun emplacements eventually became an underground party spot for teenagers and fell into disrepair after the Army left Marin in the 1980s.
Mia Monroe, a ranger with the Golden Gate National Recreation Area, told The San Francisco Chronicle that more than a dozen National Park Service volunteers worked to shore up and clean out the battery, in order to reopen the landmark to visitors. Their work earned them a major park service award last month.
The site is just across the Golden Gate Bridge from San Francisco in the Marin Headlands, a popular tourist spot known for its open spaces, beaches and sweeping views of the city and the ocean. The battery is open for tours from noon to 4 p.m. on the first Sunday of each month.