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Building renovation

The Folger’s 1932 building, designed by architect Paul Cret, is undergoing a major renovation to expand public space, improve accessibility, and enhance the experience for all who come to the Folger.

Aerial view of the West Entry Plaza and gardens, with ramps and stairs leading down to the building entrance

Reopening Friday, June 21, 2024

We’ve announced that we’re reopening our building this June! More details coming soon. We can’t wait to share our new spaces with you! Get a taste for what you can do this summer when you visit us

About the renovation

Reaching out to a wide range of visitors, the building renovation project is adding new exhibition galleries, a learning lab, research spaces, social gathering spots, and more. Visitors will enter the new 12,000-square-foot Adams Pavilion through large, welcoming, and fully accessible plazas on both the east- and west-facing sides of the building. The project is made possible by The Wonder of Will Campaign.

During construction

While construction continues, our historic building at 201 East Capitol Street is not accessible to visitors for exhibitions, tours, or research. However, Folger Theatre welcomes audiences back to its historic home, while additional performances and programs continue at other venues and online.

What’s on

The Wonder of Will:
The Campaign for the Folger Shakespeare Library

The Wonder of Will

The Wonder of Will has raised over $50 million to support the building renovation and the Folger’s many programs. Participate in the way that is most meaningful to you, from funding beautiful new spaces to supporting the programs that bring Shakespeare and his world to life.

Make a gift now

Our campaign leaders and donors

Contact us at 202-675-0303 or wow@folger.edu

New spaces and experiences

Education

The learning lab is the Folger’s new center for all kinds of learning, including hands-on demonstrations, interactive workshops, and lively discussions for learners of all ages. New exhibition galleries and more deeply engaging programs for students and teachers will enrich and support classroom work with Shakespeare’s texts.

Visitor amenities

  • Full accessibility
  • Elevator access to all public levels
  • Café services in the Great Hall
  • Expanded gift shop
  • Expanded restrooms

Research

New study rooms are being created for researchers to consult about rare materials with Folger curators and conservators, along with multipurpose, flexible spaces for collaboration and seminars by the Folger Institute and others. The Reading Room, which features new ergonomic furniture, will reopen Tuesday, June 25, 2024.

Timeline

Track the project’s progress since 2018.

Information for neighbors on Capitol Hill

The Folger is working to minimize the disruption our renovation project will have on the surrounding neighborhood. Traffic patterns around the 201 East Capitol building remain the same. Sign up for email updates

About the architects, designers, and other partners

Learn more about the people we are working with to accomplish this project.