U.S. Capitol Visitor’s Center
U.S. Capitol Visitor’s Center
U.S. Capitol Visitor’s Center

U.S. Capitol Visitor Center

US Capitol: Washington, DC

JPA designed the MEP infrastructure for a 580,000-SF underground facility for the five-million visitors to the U.S. Capitol each year. Located beneath the East Plaza of the Capitol building, visitor amenities include two 250-seat orientation theaters, a 20,000-SF museum-quality exhibition hall for artifacts and documents from the National Archives and Library of Congress, a great hall for ticketing and information services, two gift shops, 36 restrooms, and a 530-seat cafeteria with food court. JPA engineers designed custom central station air-handling units to ventilate and air condition the visitor center. New chilled water and steam services serve both the visitor center and the entire Capitol building through a new utility tunnel extending two blocks underground. Electrical design included three new 15 kV medium-voltage switchgears for the Capitol, with over 12 miles of 15 kV distribution cable serving various vaults. A new underground standby/emergency power plant supports both the visitor center and Capitol for life safety systems, smoke control equipment, communications systems, security systems, sensitive electronic and critical equipment, and the environmental systems for the exhibition area.

Exterior Photos © Alain Jaramillo Architectural Photography

Interior photo © RTKL.com/David Whitcomb

Architect: RTKL / An Arcadis Company

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