TEXAS – Saturday, the State Preservation Board announced the public will once again have access to the Capitol building beginning January 4, releasing new details after Governor Abbott’s first announcement of the reopening earlier this month.
The reopening comes in preparation for the 87th Legislative Session, which will begin Tuesday, January 12 at noon.
In a press release, the board said “the agency has the responsibility to provide a safe environment when persons are on the grounds and in the public areas of the building. This includes implementing best practices for preventing the transmission of the COVID-19 virus during the pandemic.”
As part of these preventative implementations, the public can expect a few changes when visiting the historic building:
Public access inside the Capitol will be from 9a.m.-6p.m., Monday through Friday.
The building will be closed for cleaning on Saturdays and Sundays.
The public may only enter via the north door of the Capitol. A mask worn over the mouth and nose will be required at all times while inside the building.
The State Preservation Board says COVID-19 testing is highly recommended and easily accessible on the north plaza at no charge. No personal data will be collected during the testing.
Other public health precautions include observing visitor capacity limits and requiring social distancing at all times in public areas.
No public tours, groups, or sponsored event space will be available.
The Board says the House and Senate will manage public access to their offices and assemblies once session is convened and rules are adopted. Visitors are encouraged to check with members’ offices for specific guidelines.