Ithaca City Courthouse

Ithaca City Courthouse

Ithaca, NY, USA

Perkins Eastman completed an addition and renovation for a courthouse and police facility for the City of Ithaca, New York.The site for the courthouse is bordered by a creek on the north and west and a steep embankment on the east. This unusual site provided the opportunity to orient the main facade of the building toward the business district, linking the facility to the district by means of a pedestrian bridge.The new addition houses courtrooms and judicial functions, allowing for needed expansion of the police department within the existing building. The new court creates a civic presence by facing the downtown area to which the original building turns its back. While security normally dictates enclosed court buildings, the Ithaca courthouse is very open; the courtroom itself has floor-to-ceiling windows that make the legal process highly visible to passersby and as pleasant as possible for the participants.The new addition links several areas of the city’s business district while establishing the groundwork for further pedestrian development along the creek edge. Building activities are housed on the second and third floors in order to create a ground-floor promenade. This arcaded walkway extends from the street front under the new addition to the bridge over the creek.Three major elements make up the building’s mass: an L-shaped block, which houses the offices and support functions; the creek connecting the end points of the L; and the courtroom volume, which is placed within the space defined by this volume, locking in the three pieces.

Project Facts

  • Client:

  • Town of Ithaca
  • Size:

  • 42,000 sq. ft.
  • Services:

  • Architecture
  • Markets:

  • Government
  • Region:

  • United States