Courthouse architect selected
Northern California architecture firm RossDrulisCusenbery has been selected to design the new Quincy courthouse, the Administrative Office of the Courts (AOC) announced Jan. 31.
The proposed project, which is in the earliest phase of site selection, will provide a new three-courtroom building to replace the court’s space in the current Quincy courthouse, which is functionally deficient and lacking in security features that meet current standards.
The project is currently in site selection. The local court, AOC and a project advisory group that includes members of the local community are reviewing potential sites. The two top sites under current consideration are: the Dame Shirley Plaza area, which would consist of Dame Shirley Plaza and an assemblage of adjacent and nearby parcels; and a privately held parcel at 199 Crescent St. (adjacent to the 76 station on Highway 70).
Following the judicial council’s standard site selection policy, the AOC worked with the court to customize a set of objective criteria to be used in evaluating potential sites. The project advisory group then validated these criteria. The goal of the project is to construct a new courthouse that meets the community’s needs, blends with the character of the town of Quincy and preserves green space.
It is important to note that the site selection process is still in its early stages, and it is possible that sites currently under consideration may not be viable for any of a variety of reasons. Should that occur, the project team would revisit other potential sites considered earlier in the process.
The Sonoma-based architecture firm of RossDrulisCusenbery was established in 1985 and has extensive civic architecture experience, including several California courthouses. Examples include the Contra Costa County Family Law Center and interiors for both the San Francisco Civic Center Courthouse and the Napa County Criminal Court and Administrative Center. For the AOC, the architecture firm is already engaged to design a new courthouse in Yuba City for the Superior Court of Sutter County. Preliminary design of that project is expected to begin this spring.
Once engaged on the Quincy courthouse project, the architecture team can begin preliminary space programming and site test fits, but architectural design must wait until a site is selected and the state Public Works Board approves acquisition. Site selection and acquisition typically take at least a year. The project is scheduled for completion in early 2015.
This project was ranked as “critical need” in the judicial branch’s capital-outlay plan, making it among the branch’s highest-priority infrastructure projects. The new Quincy courthouse is among 41 projects to be funded by Senate Bill 1407, which finances critically needed courthouse construction, renovation and repair through a portion of judicial branch fees, penalties and assessments, without reliance on the state’s General Fund.
To date, 36 architectural firms have been selected or hired for trial court capital projects in the AOC’s courthouse construction program. The overall program will create thousands more jobs in local communities as the projects proceed through design and construction over the next five years.