The Florida Senate’s chamber renovations should be done by early-to-mid November.
Senate spokeswoman Katie Betta tweeted back on Oct. 5: “Chamber Reno Update — About one month to left to go.”
She posted photos showing the chamber with redone walls, new desks, and new carpet going down.
As planned, the nearly 40-year-old mural that greeted visitors to the 5th floor gallery has been removed.
Departing Senate President Andy Gardiner has said the mural will be preserved for viewing elsewhere and stored until then.
The 10-foot-by-16 foot “Five Flags Mural” greeted visitors to the Senate since the Capitol opened in 1978.
The work also happens to depict a Confederate general and flag. The Senate previously voted to remove that symbol from its official seal and insignia.
When the chamber is reopened, senators will stand under a new ceiling dome, modeled after one in the Historic Capitol.
Gardiner pulled the trigger on the upgrade, recognizing that the chamber “has received only minimal updates since its original construction in the 1970s,” he said in a memo.
The final product in the Senate will be similar to an artists’ rendering released earlier this year.
It shows the new dome and other design elements that echo the Historic Capitol’s exterior, such as a pediment on top of columns over the president’s rostrum and the words, “In God We Trust.”
The renovation project was budgeted for $5 million. The chamber should be open for the Nov. 22 Organization Session.