The state Capitol is big. Five expansive floors with open spaces and vaulted ceilings, several grand staircases that look like they were designed by MC Escher, and two chambers for the 63-member state Senate and 150-member Assembly.
But the space, like anywhere, is finite. And that makes social distancing all the more difficult.
Lawmakers are convening session Wednesday under strict rules for entering their legislative chambers — rules being put in place after two Democrats in the Assembly, Helene Weinstein and Charles Barron, were found to have tested positive for coronavirus.
In the state Senate, the only lawmakers who will be gaveling in will be the two floor leaders for the Democratic and Republican conferences.
The Assembly is limiting occupancy in the chamber at any given time to 30 people, according to a memo from Speaker Carl Heastie. The Assembly Labor and Rules committees, which typically meet in an intimate space off the floor, will be meeting in Hearing Room B, an auditorium-style space in the Legislative Office Building.
Lawmakers will be called over in groups from their legislative offices to vote.
The state Capitol has been closed to visitors since Sunday.