ZGF was selected to design the first new courthouse in the state of California devoted to family law. This new 20-courtroom Courthouse occupies a prominent site in downtown San Jose, near St. James Park and adjacent to the San Jose light rail line. The new building replaces six leased facilities and consolidate all family-related services, including Family Court, Juvenile Dependency, and Drug Court, into a single facility, thereby improving services and increasing operational efficiencies for the residents of Santa Clara County. It also includes a self-help center, family court services, a child waiting area, and space for justice partners. A secure central holding area, as well as separate hallways for the public, staff, and in-custody defendants, are among the security improvements featured in the new, 233,695 SF, eight-story courthouse. Designed to create a calming, friendly, and stress-reducing environment for the children and families it serves, flexibility was also an important objective. The design needed to support the rapidly changing approaches to the case types and operations, and enable future addition or alteration of courtrooms, as necessary. The LEED Gold® courthouse integrates high-performance design strategies, including a high-performance building envelope, innovative stormwater management solutions, native landscaping, green roofs, high-efficiency plumbing fixtures, and enhanced ventilation through the use of chilled beams, displacement ventilation, and radiant piping.

PUBLICATION