The new facility is a four-courtroom venue which will facilitate both Circuit and District Court business. Two courts, a jury court and a smaller non-jury are situated at ground floor level with a similar arrangement at second floor level. The courts are double height rooms.
The new building also includes ten holding cells, at lower ground floor level, six court holding rooms adjacent to the courts, a vulnerable witness room, consulting rooms, a suite for legal practitioners and judges’ chambers.
The building also features office accommodation for judges and court staff.
In addition, there is also a room which can be used for those giving video evidence directly to any of the courtrooms and may even be used to give video evidence abroad.
Internally, the floor plans are organised around the courtrooms allowing the public, judges, jury, and persons in custody to enter the courtrooms via distinctly different routes. The design and facilities protect the security, dignity and privacy of all who seek redress or are asked to account for their actions in the new court building. The building is universally accessible for public and staff.
The courthouse is built on the site of a former swimming pool which had been backfilled with builders’ rubble. Working to a very tight construction programme, it was essential to develop sub-structure options for the contractor which ensured flexibility and adaptability.