Architecture & Heritage
Criminal Courts of Justice, Dublin.
The building has been constructed to deal with criminal business of Dublin District Court, Dublin Circuit Court, Central Criminal Court, Special Criminal Court and Court of Criminal Appeal. Situated on the western side of the city's Legal Quarter, close to current court buildings, the Luas line and Heuston station, the building is on the corner of Parkgate Street and Infirmary Road, an important gateway to the city's civic and business area.
This world class facility is suited to the administration of criminal justice in twenty first century Ireland. It is a landmark civic building and an iconic addition to the Dublin cityscape. The use of indigenous and quality materials reflects the dignity and importance of the courts and ensures the privacy and comfort of all court users. Light is filtered into the courtrooms by means of an external bronze screen which highlights the walnut furniture and fittings. The building provides separate and secure segregation for the public, jurors, persons in custody, judiciary and staff.
Entranced via a striking public plaza, the building is the equivalent of 11 stories and has a floor area of approximately 23,000m2 with over 450 rooms including 22 courtrooms. It incorporates almost 25,000m3 of concrete and is clad with 12,000 m2 of glazing. It has 250 stair flights and 27 lifts. The courtrooms are enabled for video-conferencing, digital recording, and electronic display of evidence. The building has extensive public spaces - a Great Hall four times the size of the Round Hall in the Four Courts - and first class consultation rooms and waiting areas. A large combined court office to deal with business from all criminal court jurisdictions is complemented by accommodation and facilities for 60 Courts Service staff.
Accommodation for vulnerable witnesses, victims, and relatives are on a par with the best in the world. A children's evidence suite was designed following consultation with Barnardos. There are extensive facilities for legal practitioners and the media and a jury reception area large enough to accommodate up to 400 jurors with dining facilities and retiring rooms within secure and segregated circulation.
There is accommodation for up to 150 barristers under a commercial arrangement with the Bar Council and accommodation for the Director of Public Prosecutions, the Gardaí, the Law Society and the Probation Service. There is cell accommodation for 100 prisoners together with a prison reception area, prison officer accommodation and ancillary facilities.
Public Private Partnership contract.
The project is delivered by way of a Public Private Partnership (PPP). The Courts Service will make an annual unitary payment for the Criminal Courts of Justice dependent on the PPP company making the individual courts and spaces in the building available for use and supported by the ne cessary services.