The four Congressional leaders, Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell, and House Republican Leader John Boehner, officially opened the U.S. Capitol Visitor Center to the public on Tuesday, December 2, 2008. This is a significant date in the history of the U.S. Capitol, as it was on December 2, 1863, that the final section of Statue of Freedom was placed atop the Capitol to signify the completion of construction of the new dome.
In order to allow for the installation of scaffolding and floor, statuary, and artwork protection in conjunction with the Dome Restoration Project, the Rotunda of the Capitol will be closed from Monday, July 27 through Monday, September 7. While the Rotunda is unavailable for tours, an alternate tour route will be provided. The Capitol Visitor Center is open during the closure of the Rotunda and will offer special activities which do not require advance reservations. You can also download our new U.S. Capitol Rotunda app.