TORONTO — Planning, design and compliance (PDC) work will soon be underway for the new Toronto courthouse in Canada. Located directly north of the Superior Court of Justice, the new Toronto courthouse will bring together in a single location several courts currently operating at different sites across the city. This much needed project is expected to reduce operational and facilities costs, make court administration more efficient and better serve the community.
City officials recently selected AECOM Canada Ltd. as the project’s PDC team. In this role, the company will monitor construction progress and provide coordination and oversight during the project’s construction, commissioning and completion as well as during the transition to the new courthouse.
The modern and accessible new courthouse will include features such as video conferencing to allow witnesses to appear from remote locations and in-custody individuals to appear from jail. It will also provide closed-circuit televisions to enable youth and other vulnerable individuals to appear before the court in a private space. Courtroom video and audio systems will also allow counsel to display video evidence recorded in various formats and for the simultaneous viewing of evidence. The facility’s single point of entry will be equipped with magnetometers, baggage scanners, continuous video surveillance and separate corridors for judiciary staff, members of the public and the accused for security reasons.
Additionally, the courthouse will be designed to meet LEED Silver standards with a focus on energy efficiency, healthy indoor environments and reduced greenhouse gas emissions, according to a statement by AECOM Canada Ltd.
Following the completion of the project’s PDC work, the Ministry of the Attorney General and Infrastructure Ontario (IO) will issue a request for qualifications (RFQ) for a team to design, build, finance and maintain the project using IO’s own alternative financing and procurement (AFP) delivery method. The RFQ will likely be issued in spring 2016.
"Once completed, the new Toronto courthouse will be a state-of-the-art facility that will enable the province to continue delivering high-quality justice services for generations to come, while creating hundreds of jobs and stimulating our economy during the construction process,” said Brad Duguid, minister of economic development, employment and infrastructure, in a statement. “Today’s announcement signifies that we are one step closer to turning this vision into reality as we continue investing in important strategic infrastructure across Ontario."
"I’m thrilled to see this important project continue to move forward,” added Attorney General Madeleine Meilleur in a statement. “This milestone brings us one step closer to building a state-of-the-art facility that will mean improved efficiencies, reduced costs and an enhanced ability to deliver justice programs to all Ontarians."
This article was originally published on Correctional News.