| Connect Follow us on Twitter Like us on Facebook
About | Subscribe | Advertise


Paint and Coatings Industry News

Main News Page

U.S. Capitol Dome Undergoing Repaint

Friday, July 2, 2010

Comment | More

U.S. Capitol dome

Work has begun on a five-month project to repaint the exterior of the U.S. Capitol Dome in Washington, D.C.

The Office of the Capitol Architect said the work began June 21 with the erection of scaffolding, hanging platforms, and swings. Workers will be suspended from the dome by safety lines as they paint the cast-iron exterior. Painters will apply more than 500 gallons of paint, tinted to match the dome’s historic color.

The protective coating is designed to help preserve and weatherproof the 154-year-old structure, with completion of the project scheduled for November.

“The U.S. Capitol Dome is iconic and is the most recognized symbol of our government,” said Stephen T. Ayers, AIA, Architect of the Capitol. “In 1793, President Washington had insisted during the original construction of the Capitol Building that it demonstrate the permanence of our federal government.

“We take great pride in our mission to preserve the Capitol Building, to ensure that it continues to stand for generations to come,” Ayers said in a statement on the dome-painting project.

The new coating will replace existing paint layers that have oxidized and eroded, dulling the dome surface. The work will preserve and protect the dome while preparations are made for a more comprehensive restoration project, the Office of the Capitol Architect said.

The phased restoration project will include removing the paint from the dome’s exterior; repairing defects in the ironwork; and resealing and repainting the ironwork with an epoxy and urethane paint system.

A spokeswoman for the Office of the Capitol Architect said the office declines to disclose specific information about such projects, including details on the products used and their manufacturers and the painting contractors involved. That policy is followed at the direction of Congress, to avoid the appearance of endorsement of products, she said.

During the current project, visitors to the Capitol will see a scaffold tower, which painters will use to access the dome.

The dome's exterior was most recently repainted in 2002. The last significant exterior renovation was carried out in 1959, when the dome was stripped of paint in order to prime the ironwork with a rust inhibitor.

The Capitol Dome is comprised of nearly nine million pounds of fireproof cast iron and was designed by Philadelphia architect Thomas U. Walter to replace an original dome of copper and wood. The dome was built from 1855 to 1866; the final section of the Statue of Freedom atop the dome was installed on Dec. 2, 1863.


Tagged categories: Protective coatings

Comment Join the Conversation:

Sign in to our community to add your comments.

SSPC: The Society for Protective Coatings

Join SSPC and Enhance
Your Career !

Built for Tough Jobs

From Epoxies to Urethanes to other high solid coatings, the new Binks Airless 75 delivers a great finish using an ergonomic design. Visit for more information.

Wasser High-Tech Coatings Inc.
Wasser Coatings Protect

Wasser Coatings offer a complete range of Moisture Cure Urethane (NEPCOAT approved) systems in addition to Polyurea membranes and linings(NSF).

Thermion Inc
Buy Back Program

We are offering $5,000
credit for your old Model
This drive system is
being discontinued by
the manufacturer.
More information at

International Paint LLC

International Paint Engineered Coatings

Learn about our solutions for:
  • Structural Steel
  • Piping & Equipment
  • Storage Tanks
  • Pressure Vessels
  • Secondary Containment

    Novatek Corporation
    Dustless Coatings Removal

    Strip it, clean it, and profile it,
    all dust free! High production
    rates and Blast like finishes.
    Comply with new lead


    The Next Generation
    of Blasting

    • Lightest
    • Coolest
    • Most Comfortable
    • Most Dependable

    Waterjet Technology Association (WJTA)
    2015 WJTA-IMCA Conf/Expo Click here to register today!

    Nov. 2-4, New Orleans. See the latest advances in automated and handheld UHP waterjetting tools/systems for paint/coating removal, surface prep, industrial cleaning. Exhibits, live demos.

    Mitsubishi Gas Chemical America
    Performance Amine 1,3-BAC

    A highly reactive cycloaliphatic diamine offering superior performance. Reasonable cost and curing efficacy makes it suitable for all types of epoxy resin applications.

    Fischer Technology Inc.
    MP0R with rotating display screen

    Automatic rotating display screen just like your smart phone. Click for Video
    Call 800-243-8417

    Technology Publishing

    The Technology Publishing Network

    The Journal of Protective Coatings & Linings (JPCL) PaintSquare
    Durability + Design Paint BidTracker

    EXPLORE:      JPCL   |   PaintSquare News   |   Interact   |   Buying Guides   |   Webinars   |   Resources   |   Classifieds
    REGISTER AND SUBSCRIBE:      Free PaintSquare Registration   |   Subscribe to JPCL   |   Subscribe to PaintSquare News
    MORE:      About   |   Privacy policy   |   Terms & conditions   |   Site Map   |   Search   |   Contact Us

    © Copyright 2000-2015, Technology Publishing / PaintSquare, All rights reserved
    2100 Wharton Street, Suite 310, Pittsburgh PA 15203-1951; Tel 1-412-431-8300; Fax 1-412-431-5428; E-mail