AECOM Canada Ltd. has been selected as the planning, design and compliance (PDC) team for the new Toronto courthouse project. The new courthouse will be located close to St. Patrick subway station, directly north of the Superior Court of Justice.
The courthouse will provide a single location to bring together several courts operating across the city, with the aim to reduce operational and facilities costs, thereby making court administration able to serve the community more efficiently. Its design will be modern and accessible, featuring:
- Video conferencing to allow witnesses to appear from remote locations and in-custody individuals to appear from jail;
- Closed-circuit television to allow vulnerable individuals to appear from a private room;
- Courtroom video/audio systems to allow counsel to present video evidence recorded in various formats for the simultaneous viewing of evidence;
- A single point of entry with magnetometers, baggage scanners, continuous video surveillance and separate corridors for judiciary, members of the public and the accused for increased security; and
- Barrier-free access to all courtrooms.
The courthouse will also be designed to meet the LEED Silver standard with a focus on energy efficiency, healthy indoor environments and reduced greenhouse gas emissions.
As the PDC team, AECOM will prepare project documents, including output specifications that will form the guidelines and performance requirements the building team must meet when preparing the project’s design. The PDC team will also monitor construction progress and provide coordination and oversight during the project’s construction, commissioning, completion and during the transition to the new courthouse.
Once the PDC aspects of the project are completed, 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 alternative financing and procurement (AFP) delivery method. Using this method, risks associated with the design, construction, financing and maintenance will be transferred to the private sector. The RFQ process is expected to begin in spring 2016.
“IO is delighted that the new Toronto courthouse project has reached this important early milestone,” said Bert Clark, Infrastructure Ontario president and CEO, in a press release. “With the selection of a PDC team, we are on our way towards choosing the successful building team to deliver the courthouse using IO’s proven AFP approach.”
The project, which will be publicly owned, controlled and operated, is a joint effort between Infrastructure Ontario and the Ministry of the Attorney General.