Courthouses Projects

Program Ratios for Courthouses in Ontario - 2016

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With the twin goals of improving consistency between capital projects as well as reducing total area requirements, we began work to define appropriate and consistent ratios of staff and space to the number of courtrooms in courthouses. We discontinued the project when new organization units within the ministry were formed to address similar topics. Completed in 2016.

Needs Assessment, Family Court, Toronto - 2015

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We estimated the need for judicial hearing rooms (courtrooms and judicial conference rooms) for a combination of Superior Court and Ontario Court Family Courts in Toronto. The proposed new facility would consolidated three existing locations in Toronto. Our forecast focused on 10 and 25 year planning horizons. A key aspect of the analysis was to determine a realistic courtroom utilization rate for the proposed new facility. We concluded that 18 judicial hearing rooms would be required in ten years. Completed in 2015.

Planning and Design Guidelines for Courthouses in British Columbia - 2015

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We were part of a team that was retained to update and expand existing guidelines for the planning and design of court facilities. The project involved extensive consultation with stakeholders in the courts system as well as government technical advisors. The resulting major document addressed general planning concepts, component requirements, illustrative room layouts, accommodation model, technical design guidelines, prototype courthouse designs and reference material. Completed in 2015.

New Toronto Courthouse - 2015

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We determined the occupants and scale of a major criminal courthouse. The building envelope was set at no more than 71,000 m2. We estimated that 65 courtrooms are required. We explored various options for keeping the total building area within the target envelope. We summarized the courtrooms and areas of the existing facilities that would be replaced by the new courthouse. We explored several ways to reduce net areas. We prepared a Facilities Program for Strategic Planning that outlined an initial area estimate for the proposed new facility. We provided a list of ideas for guiding the next steps of this unique project. Completed in 2015.

Hearing Rooms for Consolidated Tribunals, Toronto - 2014

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We defined the need for hearing rooms for a proposed consolidation of twelve adjudicative tribunals in Toronto. Currently, the tribunals have a combined total of 39 hearing rooms. The challenge was to explore the potential for efficiencies and space savings if the tribunals can share some or all of the planned hearing and mediation rooms. We concluded that consolidated location would need 27 hearing rooms — 18 small rooms, 7 medium rooms and two large rooms. Completed in 2014.

Update and Extension, Forecasting Need for Court Facilities, Ontario - 2012

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We refined and updated a method for forecasting the long-range the demand for courtrooms. We also developed a tool for measuring crowding based on the forecasting model. Finally, we developed ratios of demand for courtrooms to functional elements in courthouses. Completed in 2012. Supplementary work included the review of demand for court facilities in Peterborough.