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Benchmarks: Journal of the New York State Unified Court System

COURT CONSTRUCTION UPDATE

COURT OF APPEALS OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK
COURT OF APPEALS OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK
The new addition (above) was constructed with the same materials and designed in the same style as the original building (below).

COURT OF APPEALS OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK

COURT OF APPEALS OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK
After an 18-month stay in temporary quarters, the State's highest court has returned to its fully-renovated and expanded Court of Appeals Hall. Built in 1842 to house state offices, the Greek-revival building was converted into a courthouse in 1917, when the elaborate H.H. Richardson-designed courtroom was dismantled, piece by piece, and moved from the State capitol to its new home. The courthouse underwent a major renovation in 1959. By the late 1990s, another renovation was necessary to replace failing building systems and bring the building into compliance with the Americans With Disabilities Act, as well as fire and building codes. Because of its growing workload, additional space was also needed.

WHAT'S NEW? The renovation involved about 60,000 square feet of courthouse interior, while the additional space of about 33,000 square feet matches the courthouse's interior and exterior design. The building's electrical, plumbing, ventilation, heating, cooling and telecommunications systems were all replaced. Wherever possible, materials, fixtures and furnishings from the 1959 renovation were restored. The first floor now has an enlarged public space adjacent to the courtroom; all seven judges' chambers and the judges' conference room are for the first time on the same floor; there is space for staff meetings and training on the third floor; and all mechanical systems and technology are now up-to-date.

ARCHITECT: DeWolff Partnership Architects LLP

APPELLATE DIVISION, FIRST DEPARTMENT

APPELLATE DIVISION, FIRST DEPARTMENT

APPELLATE DIVISION, FIRST DEPARTMENT
In 1966, the New York City Landmarks Commission designated the Appellate Division, First Department courthouse as a landmark and cited it as the "epitome of collaboration between architect, sculptor and mural painter." By the early 1990s, the courthouse, originally completed in 1900, was showing its age. The marble facade was deteriorating, building systems needed to be replaced or updated and the judges' ornate wooden bench was in a state of serious disrepair.

WHAT'S NEW? A multi-year project has restored the courthouse to its original grandeur. The facade has been repaired and stabilized and the major building systems replaced or modernized. The restoration of the courtroom included the dismantling, refurnishing and reinstallation of the judges' bench, and the replication of the original 1900 chandeliers and wall sconces, which had been removed in an earlier renovation. In March, the courthouse was rededicated in a ceremony attended by Gov. George E. Pataki, Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg and Chief Judge Judith S. Kaye.

ARCHITECT: Platt Byard Dovell White LLP and SBLM Architects

WESTCHESTER COUNTY COURTHOUSE

WESTCHESTER COUNTY COURTHOUSE

WESTCHESTER COUNTY COURTHOUSE
A new annex to the Westchester County Courthouse in White Plains opened in January.

WHAT'S NEW? The three-story annex includes 22 courtrooms and related space for the Family and County Courts. A key feature is an enclosed landscaped area, open to the sky, that was created by joining the semicircular glass-and-brick annex to the existing 20-story courthouse tower. The parklike area is open to court visitors and can be viewed from courthouse waiting areas. The project's final phase will be the renovation of the tower, originally completed in 1970, for the Supreme Court and the Westchester County Surrogate.

ARCHITECT: Pei Cobb Freed & Partners Fuller and D'Angelo P.C.

JEFFERSON COUNTY COURTHOUSE

JEFFERSON COUNTY COURTHOUSE

JEFFERSON COUNTY COURTHOUSE
After years of planning, design and construction, the Jefferson County Courthouse opened in October 2004 in Watertown. The courthouse includes the Family Court, Surrogate's Court, County Court, the Supreme Court Law Library and the Commissioner of Jurors.

WHAT'S NEW? The new facility is comprised of a renovated post office and a new addition. The former post office is a historic structure, which once housed a courtroom of the federal district court, later renovated for County Court use. The project features state-of-the-art technology, including a Digital Evidence Presentation System. The project team worked closely with the New York State Office of Parks and Historic Preservation, which has jurisdiction over projects that alter or otherwise have an impact on historic buildings.

ARCHITECT: RicciGreene Associates

SUFFOLK COUNTY SIXTH DISTRICT COURT

SIXTH DISTRICT COURT IN PATCHOGUE

SIXTH DISTRICT COURT IN PATCHOGUE
The Sixth District Court in Patchogue was closed for 16 months while undergoing extensive renovations to better serve its constituents. The court facility reopened on Nov. 17, 2004.

WHAT'S NEW? The renovated courthouse contains an enlarged courtroom to accommodate jury trials, a jury-deliberation room, attorney-client meeting rooms, two arbitration-hearing rooms, and enhanced security technology. The renovation also included a new heating, ventilation and air conditioning system, a new fire alarm system, a new magnetometer and security station, new lighting in the parking lot and landscape for the building perimeter. A spacious lobby includes a new public information system that provides procedural "how-to" information to self-represented litigants and attorneys.

ARCHITECT: Keith Larsen and Wiedersum Associates

Spring/Summer 2005PDF Format
HTML: Judicial Institute Judicial Salary Bill State of the Judiciary Drug Law Reform Welcome Innovative Jury Practices ABA American Jury Initiative Security Camera Network Court Security Review Profile: Joseph J. Traficanti Jr. Chief Justices In Manhattan Civil Case Management Court Officer Recruitment Public Access to Courts Family Court E-Petition Program Kids Go to Work Court Construction Update Fiduciary Commission Report OCA Update Bronx Court Cuts Case Backlog Law Day 2005 Merit Performance Awards

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Web page updated: September 1, 2006 - www.NYCOURTS.gov