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WV Capitol capacity reduced by dome repair project


Jan. 9, 2019

W.Va. Capitol’s capacity reduced by dome repair project


CHARLESTON, W.Va. – Ongoing repairs to the interior of the West Virginia State Capitol dome means limits to the historic building’s total capacity, including during the 2019 Regular Session of the Legislature, state officials announced Wednesday.


With the entire rotunda walled off, the revised occupancy load is 602 for the remaining space outside the House and Senate chambers and 1,062 for the space around the lower rotunda on the ground floor.


The resulting total adjusted occupancy level for the non-office space in the Capitol’s main section is 1,664. The repairs are expected to continue until the fall of 2020.


The Capitol Police requested an updated safety survey from the state’s General Services Division last year after the repair project began. Capitol Police had previously sought one in response to the large volume of visitors to the Capitol during the 2018 Regular Session. That study identified a total capacity for both the upper and lower rotunda areas of 3,520 people or 1,760 for each level.


Both surveys relied on National Fire Protection Association standards and are based on the square footage of the upper and lower rotunda areas. Each is less than 10,000 square feet.


The Capitol Police, also known as the Division of Protective Services, is part of the Department of Military Affairs and Public Safety. A certified law enforcement agency, it provides for the safety and security of those who visit, conduct business or work at the Capitol Complex and other state facilities.

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LAWRENCE MESSINA (304) 558-2930 Lawrence.C.Messina@wv.gov