New State Courts Towers on track for 2020 opening

The $450 million development comprises two towers connected by 39 link bridges.
The $450 million development comprises two towers connected by 39 link bridges.ST PHOTO: GAVIN FOO

35-storey project is tallest govt building here

At 178m, the new State Courts Towers stands out among its neighbours in Chinatown and is now the tallest government building in Singapore.

A ceremony, officiated by Chief Justice Sundaresh Menon, was held on Friday to mark the completion of structural works for the 35-storey building, which comprises two interconnected towers.

During the event, a drone was launched to place the symbolic final portion of concrete to "top out" the structure.

The building is on schedule to be fully operational by the first quarter of next year.

The $450 million project, which started in 2014, will now shift to the final phase of construction of the interior of the two towers.

One tower will be fitted out with 53 courtrooms and the same number of hearing chambers to operate as the Court Tower, said Presiding Judge of the State Courts, Justice See Kee Oon. This is an increase from the 37 courtrooms and 40 chambers in the existing nine-storey State Courts building.

"These courtrooms and chambers will be equipped with the necessary facilities and technology that will allow us to deliver justice in a timely and efficient manner and to meet the demands of an IT-connected community," added Justice See.

WELL-EQUIPPED COURTROOMS

These courtrooms and chambers will be equipped with the necessary facilities and technology that will allow us to deliver justice in a timely and efficient manner and to meet the demands of an IT-connected community.

JUSTICE SEE KEE OON

In the pipeline are a resource management system that can deploy court interpreters in real time according to their language and dialect proficiency, as well as a system that transcribes court proceedings instantly and allows parties to access the transcripts on computer screens.

The Court Tower will be connected to the Office Tower by 39 link bridges.

Energy-saving technology, including solar panels and rain water harvesting, has also been incorporated into the design of the towers.

In 2011, expansion plans for the current octagonal-shaped courthouse were mapped out as the caseload and the functions of the State Courts rose over the years.

The ground-breaking ceremony for the State Courts Towers took place in May 2014 and construction of the superstructure - the part that is above ground level - began in March 2017.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Sunday Times on January 27, 2019, with the headline 'New State Courts Towers on track for 2020 opening'. Print Edition | Subscribe