As Denver Colorado’s political and cultural core, the Civic Center represents Colorado’s most significant public architecture, a legacy created by the City Beautiful movement. Working together with Fentress Architects, consultants with Shen Milsom Wilke, LLC (SM&W) provided acoustical, audiovisual, security and telecommunication design services for the new complex which houses multiple tenants to include the Department of Law including the State Attorney Generals office the State Court Administrator, Public Defender and other legal agencies each having various design requirements. This state courts complex completes Denver’s civic center master plan with a stately gesture. A four-story, 150,000 square foot courthouse for the Supreme Court and Court of Appeals is anchored by the grand glass-domed atrium. Connected to this is a twelve-story, 450,000 square foot office tower. The courthouse will host the Supreme Court Law Library, an interactive visitor’s Learning Center for the American Justice System, and a 4,000 square foot green roof that advances the goal of LEED Gold certification.
The initial challenge on the project was the relocation of the Supreme Court and Library to a temporary facility which was formerly a Starbucks retail space. SM&W provided design criteria to enable the owner to relocate and integrate all of the existing audiovisual, telecommunications and security equipment to the new temporary facility. The acoustical challenges in relocating the tenants included providing sound isolation through the storefront facade to the street and adjacent bus station. The new building required multiple audiovisual designs for presentation and collaboration in various types of conference rooms, training rooms, interview rooms, classrooms, assembly rooms and moot court facilities.
The security team was required to design a system that offered an unobtrusive and user friendly system, yet portray a highly secure work environment for Justices, state judicial staff, as well as the general public. The design also needed to separate public circulation areas from sensitive and restricted staff areas. IT/telecommunications design requirements focused on providing discreet networks to all tenants while providing an infrastructure robust enough for future requirements.