The Supreme Court announced Monday that it will reopen to the public this week in another step toward resuming its practices before the Covid pandemic led to strict limits on who could enter the building.
Starting Thursday, the building will be open to visitors from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. on weekdays when judges are not hearing arguments, according to the court. website. A court spokesman confirmed the reopening plans.
The move marks the latest return to pre-pandemic operations in the high court. In October, the court began allowing visitors to attend arguments, but the building was otherwise closed to the public.
Prior to March 2020, visitors could tour the court, view exhibits, and visit the cafeteria and gift shop.
The recent steps to reopen come amid heightened concerns about how the court is viewed by the public after it struck down the constitutional right to abortion, as well as concerns about the safety of judges.
A fence was erected around the building in May after the abortion ruling was leaked, sparking protests in court and at the homes of some of the judges. A California gunman has been charged with attempted murder after he was arrested outside the Maryland home of conservative judge Brett Kavanaugh in June.
In August the fence surrounding the Supreme Court was removed.
Lawrence Hurley contributed.