Ralph Applebaum Associates

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United States Capitol Visitor Center

Washington, D.C.

Capitol Visitor Center
United States Capitol Visitor Center_2

Opened to the public in 2008, the United States Capitol Visitor Center is a major addition to the United States Capitol complex. It serves as an expansion space for the U.S. Congress and as the primary circulation space for the general public at the Capitol. Every year, the Capitol Visitor Center welcomes over 2.5 million people. The legacy and processes of the government’s legislative branch are featured in an artifact-rich introduction to the heart of America’s representative democracy.

United States Capitol Visitor Center_4
United States Capitol Visitor Center_4

RAA collaborated with the Architect of the Capitol, Senate and House historians, the Library of Congress, the NaRAA collaborated with the Architect of the Capitol, Senate and House historians, the Library of Congress, the National Archives, and the Senate and House leadership to create an interpretive experience that presents the founding principles of American government for all visitors.

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United States Capitol Visitor Center_7
United States Capitol Visitor Center_7

Exhibits on the history of the Senate and House, a series of models showing the Capitol’s evolution, and interactive displays invite visitors to explore the building’s historic architecture, art, and decorative arts. Highlights of the gallery are two spaces evoking the House and Senate chambers. These present historic films, identify senators and representatives, and, when the chambers are in session, provide contextualized feeds from their floors.

Year 2008

Size 65,000 square feet

Architect CRTKL

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