Quinte Consolidated Courthouse

Belleville, Ontario
PCL Constructors Canada
16,075 m2 | 173,000 ft2
Scope of Service:
Full Architectural Services


P3 Awards Finalist, Best Designed Project: Partnerships Bulletin/P3 Bulletin, 2015

IES Illumination Award of Merit, Illuminating Engineering Society, 2015

Canadian Design-Build Institute, Award of Excellence Honourable Mention, 2014

The winner of a Design-Build-Finance-Maintain (DBFM) competition, this court facility is located on the Moira River in central Belleville. WZMH’s design develops a strong connection between the courthouse and the city’s other main civic facility: City Hall, located across the river. WZMH oriented the building on an east-west axis, slightly off the main city grid, to ensure that its significant exterior and interior public spaces have a view of City Hall. This orientation emphasizes the civic importance of the courthouse and also creates optimal conditions for sustainability strategies, including passive solar heating and daylight harvesting.

A minimalist, modern design using local Ontario limestone gives a sense of gravitas to the courthouse exterior, its stature further underlined by a dignified entrance forecourt and public square facing the downtown core. The functional organization of the facility creates a zone of public space on one side and more secure spaces on the other. Functions are vertically stratified within the six-storey structure according to the need for public access: large courtrooms, ceremonial spaces, and jury selection rooms are located on the ground floor, while less-used and more secure spaces are on higher floors.