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Construction on a new federal courthouse has begun in downtown Mobile.

The U.S. General Services Administration (GSA), U.S. District Court, Southern District in Alabama, and local elected officials today broke ground on the $90 million federal courthouse.  The project, more than two decades in the making, includes a new 155,600 square foot courthouse complex, followed by renovations to the 1930s-era Campbell U.S. Courthouse to be completed in 2020.

GSA officials say the project will consolidate court operations out of leased space into a sustainable, high-performing, and secure campus that meets LEED Gold standards, saves taxpayer dollars and spurs local development.

“As landlord to the federal government, GSA recognizes the power of public spaces to transform communities,” GSA Public Buildings Service Commissioner Norman Dong said. “GSA has designed the Mobile courthouse project to meet the judiciary’s 21st century needs, contribute to local development goals, and maximize taxpayer savings.  The project couples the public’s investment with design excellence and economic opportunity.”

Among local officials in attendance was Mobile Mayor Sandy Stimpson. “I applaud the U.S. District Court and the U.S. General Services Administration’s decision to invest in Downtown Mobile because every great city has a great downtown,” Stimpson remarked. ‘The restoration of the historic John A. Campbell U.S. Courthouse and the construction of a new U.S. District Courthouse will be a catalyst for growth, attracting new jobs to our area.”

The Fiscal Year 2016 Omnibus Spending Bill recently passed included nearly $1 billion for the construction of new courthouses across the nation, based on the priorities established by the Judicial Conference of the United States.

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A rendering of the new federal courthouse in downtown Mobile, Ala. (GSA/Special to the Pulse)

Once constructed, the new courthouse will house the U.S. District Court, U.S. Magistrate Court, U.S. District Clerk of Court and U.S. Marshals Service.  The renovated Campbell Courthouse will accommodate the U.S. Court of Appeals, U.S. District Court, U.S. District Clerk of Court, U.S. Bankruptcy Court, U.S. Bankruptcy Clerk of Court, U.S. Bankruptcy Administrator, U.S. Probation, Federal Public Defender’s Office, U.S. Marshals Service, a Congressional Office, and GSA.

GSA awarded the design-build contract to Yates Construction in April 2015.  Hartman Cox’s Lee Becker and Mary Kay Lanzillotta are lead designers on the new courthouse and renovation projects, respectively.  URS/AECOM is the architect and engineer of record.

Lead Designer Lee Becker, GSA Commissioner Norman Dong, Lead Designer Mary Kay Lanzillotta, Mobile Mayor William "Sandy" Stimpson, US Senator Jeff Sessions, US Senator Richard Shelby, US Representative Bradley Byrne, Senior Judge Charles R. Butler, Jr., Chief Judge William Steele. (Sam Harris/Special to The Pulse)

Lead Designer Lee Becker, GSA Commissioner Norman Dong, Lead Designer Mary Kay Lanzillotta, Mobile Mayor William “Sandy” Stimpson, US Senator Jeff Sessions, US Senator Richard Shelby, US Representative Bradley Byrne, Senior Judge Charles R. Butler, Jr., Chief Judge William Steele. (Sam Harris/Special to The Pulse)

The 155,000 square foot building will have six courtrooms and nine chambers.

“The new courthouse we’re building will help them address space constraints, security issues from the historic building that we’ve seen and we also see that this investment of federal dollars will be a strong catalyst to promote economic development,” said Norman Dong, Commissioner, GSA Public Buildings Service.

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A rendering of the new federal courthouse in downtown Mobile, Ala. (GSA/Special to the Pulse)

The Mobile courthouse project will meet the long-term needs of the U.S. Courts in southern Alabama and consolidate court operations out of leased space into a secure, high-performing, federally-owned campus that saves $805,135 in annual lease payments.  Project highlights include:

  • A new 155,600 square foot courthouse with 6 courtrooms and 9 chambers.  The courthouse will feature a limestone facade sourced from Russellville, Alabama;
  • Renovations to the Campbell Courthouse designed to improve security and accessibility, upgrade to energy-efficient building systems, enhance life safety features (including installation of a new fire suppression system), abate hazardous materials and improve tenant and public spaces;
    Energy Star-rated equipment, high efficiency lighting, water conserving plumbing, solar-powered water heating systems, and low-emitting materials in both facilities;
  • Sustainable designs projected to meet the U.S. Green Building Council’s Leadership in Energy & Environment Design(LEED) Gold certification standards; and
  • A $15 million small business goal.

 

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