Nicoll Russell Studios were invited by Atkins to prepare design proposals for this satellite magistrates’ court. The site, located on the edge of the city centre, was indentified as a key gateway in the city’s redevelopment plan.
From that point of view the design addressed key vantage points and desire lines, whilst responding to the regeneration of the city, and therefore repairing building lines, and adopting sympathetic massing. The court housed a number of court types ranging from magistrates’ courts through to family, youth and civil courts along with formal hearing rooms. The twenty one courts were arranged around an atrium, which in turn defined an area of secure public realm in front of the building’s main entrance.
The design responded to the site’s context in terms of the use of materials and its sustainable and environmental response in an effort to attain a BREEAM “excellent” score. The court halls around the atrium are deliberately transparent to maximise the building’s legibility and create a modern and humane home for justice.