The Court of Justice, designed by the architects team of J. MAYER H. Architects, a2o-architecten and Lensºass architecten, has been opened in Hasselt, Belgium.
The exterior part of the facility was completed in 2011 while the interior was finished in the first quarter of 2013.
The new facility is an open, transparent building with direct public access, combining the Court of Justice with a university library and auditoriums for the faculty of law.
As per the plans, the structure is divided into three separate units, which include courtrooms, the library for students and an office tower with a 64m-high restaurant.
The facility features 20,763m² of above-ground space, which include offices, meeting-rooms, a library, reception, a cafeteria and courtrooms.
It also has 4,694m² of underground space for archive and 3,384m² of underground space for parking.
Based on a masterplan by West 8, the former railway station site has been restructured with a park, public buildings, offices and hotels, as well as urban residential blocks.
J. MAYER H. Architects said references in the design process point to both the image of the "tree", the hazelnut trees in the City of Hasselt’s coat of arms, and steel structures in the once industrial and Art Nouveau-influenced area.
Sustainable features of the building include a perforated skin-on exterior, which will shade the interior from solar heat gain and allow daylight inside the structure.
Image: The exterior part of the facility was completed in 2011 while the interior was finished in the second quarter of 2013. Photo: Courtesy of J. MAYER H. Architects.