Construction has started on the $17.8-million, 115,000-square-foot East Los Angeles Municipal Courts Building in Belvedere Park in East Los Angeles, replacing a "woefully outdated" facility, according to County Supervisor Edmund D. Edelman.
The six-story complex was designed by Westwood-based Kanner Associates and is being built by the M. H. Golden Co., Pasadena.
"The building, scheduled for completion in two years, will serve the justice system needs of the community for many years to come," Edelman said, adding that the complex meets the high standards of design and construction that are demanded for county buildings.
No general fund tax money will be used to finance the courthouse, Edelman said. Construction financing was assured when the Board of Supervisors authorized offering for sale up to $25 million in certificates of participation. The county will pay off the certificates from traffic ticket fines in a special state courthouse construction fund.
Overlook Park, Lake
The building will be adjacent to the Atlantic Boulevard off-ramp of the Pomona (60) Freeway, with the judges' chambers and jury deliberation rooms on the east side of the structure, overlooking the park and its lake.
The building's exterior will feature lightly sandblasted precast architectural concrete panels on the upper levels, according to Stephen H. Kanner, project designer. The lower levels will be clad in ceramic tiles matching the color of the upper levels.
Three public elevators, one staff elevator and one security elevator will serve the building. An internal concourse will lead to the courtrooms along the west side of the building.
Interior corridors will feature ceramic tile floors and wainscoting arranged in a running bond pattern that is continued on the exterior and in the oak-paneled judicial benches.
On the building's lower level will be a public entrance, offices for law enforcement personnel, the main detention facilities, a jury assembly room and storage and loading docks.
The first floor will also have a public entry, a high-security court, judge's chambers, offices, a jury deliberation room and a food concession outlet. The second through fourth floors will have courtrooms, judges' chambers, a law library and offices, while the fifth floor will contain mechanical equipment and a communications microwave room.
Parking for 581 cars will be provided, 263 spaces on grade and 318 spaces in a recently constructed county-designed parking structure.
Among the other county facilities in the civic center are a library, probation building, a sheriff's special enforcement office building and a comprehensive health center.