Project DescriptionFROM THE ARCHITECTS:
The Middle District of Florida is one of the busiest court districts in the nation. The caseload per judge is approximately 20 percent above the national average. The question that arose was how to meet the district’s oversized needs in its existing undersized, under-secure courthouse.
The U.S. General Services Administration (GSA) hired Heery Design in 1999 to serve as architects and engineers of record, in addition to providing on-site construction administration services for the new 330,000 SF George C. Young United States Courthouse and Federal Building Annex. Construction on the $86.2 million facility began in March 2003 and was completed in May 2007. United States Supreme Court Associate Justice Clarence Thomas offered the keynote address at the facility’s formal dedication ceremony on September 21, 2007.
The six-story structure, which includes an 8,000 SF atrium, houses 15 courtrooms, judges’ chambers, clerk of court, US Probation, US Pretrial services, the United States Marshall’s Service, two Grand Jury hearing rooms suites and a satellite circuit library. The facility’s design was dictated by four specific goals: create space to accommodate growth; maximize facility and staff security; enable judges to function in the most efficient, effective manner; and transition a burgeoning downtown corridor to the smaller scale surrounding neighborhood. To help understand judges’ individual and collective requirements, Heery constructed a mock-up courtroom off-site. Once completed, the design team spent six months working with judges to develop flexible courtrooms capable of easy furniture and IT reconfiguration.