|Visiting The Empire State Plaza
|The New York State Capitol Tour Program
Sitting majestically atop Albany's State Street hill, the New York State Capitol has served as the seat of government for New York since the 1880s. The building is a marvel of late 19th-century architectural grandeur, built by hand of solid masonry over a period of 25 years. Today the building is undergoing extensive restoration to maintain and protect it for future generations of New Yorkers.
Visiting the Hall of Governors and Capitol exhibits: Governor Cuomo has reopened the Capitol's historic Hall of Governors to the public. Sweeping renovations have been made, including the addition of portraits, informational signs, and a timeline. Museum-quality exhibits on New York State's history have been installed throughout the building. For more information, visit the Hall of Governor's website at: www.hallofgovernors.ny.gov.
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|Tour Information and Reservations
Walk-in tours of the Capitol for the general public are offered Monday through Friday at 10:00 a.m., 12:00 p.m., 2:00 p.m., and 3:00 p.m. No reservations are required. In addition, visitors may download a self-guided audio tour to use while visiting the State Capitol. There are no public tours on Saturdays, Sundays, and holidays. For more information, please call the Plaza Visitor Center at 518-474-2418.
Cost: Tours are offered free of charge.
Location: All Capitol tours begin on the first floor at the base of the Senate staircase.
Length: Tours last 45 to 60 minutes.
Accessibility: Please inform us of any special needs when making your reservation.
Group Size: A maximum of 45 participants.
Security: Visitors to the Capitol will be required to pass through metal detectors and have any bags scanned through an x-ray machine. Personal belongings such as backpacks and large bags should be left behind. Sharp objects, such as pocket knives and nail clippers will not be allowed into the building.
|SPECIAL PROGRAMS AND CHANGING EXHIBITS
- The Empire State Plaza at 50 Tour
For the 50th anniversary of the laying of the Plaza's cornerstone, learn how government and culture are housed within the Modern architecture of the Empire State Plaza. Orient yourself to this world-class complex, including the Plaza's memorials, a visit to The Egg and an overview of the Plaza Art Collection - the greatest public collection of Modern Art in the country.
Where: Plaza Visitor Center/Gift Shop - North Concourse
When: July 6 - September 4, 2015
Monday - Friday, Tours departing at 11:15am and 1:15pm
While you're here, don't miss the Empire State Plaza at 50 exhibit in the New York State Museum. More information at: https://www.ny.gov/programs/empire-state-plaza-50
- A Flag for the Ages, Abraham Lincoln and the New York State Capitol
This special tour highlights Abraham Lincoln's historic connections to New York State, his visit to the Old New York State Capitol in 1861 and his laying in state in the Old New York State Capitol in 1865. It will include a look at the Exhibit: "A Flag for the Ages: Lincoln's Bier Flag," an exhibit exploring Lincoln's death and funeral, administered by the New York State Military Museum.
When: First Thursday of the month, June 2015 - September 2015
Time: 5:30 - 6:30 pm
Location: State Street Lobby of the Capitol
Reservations: Register Online or call 518-473-7582
- The Hall of New York - Historic Landscapes of Every Region of New York State
Where: Second Floor, North Corridor
Learn More: www.hallofnewyork.ny.gov/
- Restoring a Landmark - Overview of the Restoration of the New York State Capitol
Where: First Floor, Senate Staircase
Learn More: Restoring a Landmark Booklet
Group Size: Maximum of 45 persons, including chaperones.
Chaperones: We suggest that one chaperone be assigned to 10 students. Chaperones should stay with their group at all times.
Appointments with Legislators: If a visit is scheduled with a legislator, please try to make the appointment for after your tour.
Arrival: Please plan to arrive 5 minutes prior to your scheduled tour. If you are going to be late, or must cancel a tour, kindly notify the Plaza Visitor Center as soon as possible. Due to the large volume of tours during the legislative session, it may not be possible to accommodate groups who arrive more than ten minutes late.
Pre-visit Resource Kit for Teachers: Teachers who plan to bring their classes to the Capitol may download the New York State Capitol Tour Program Resource Kit to help prepare their students for the tour or use as an enhancement afterward. All lessons were written in accordance with the New York State learning standards for social studies and the visual arts.