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US Federal Courthouse – Cedar Rapids

The graceful integration of daylight and electric light brings the outside in — complimenting a striking and transparent building envelope seen for miles.

Hoping to achieve a visually and physically inviting space for the nineteen government agencies housed within, the design team created a light-filled structure that is striking yet surprisingly functional.

During the design process, transparency was a key element including completely daylit public areas and courtrooms. Daylit courtrooms had gone a bit out of fashion in courthouses built during the last half of the 20th century. Nonetheless, integration of historical courtroom designs from the past allowed for diffuse daylight in all five courtrooms.

The project met all sustainability challenges presented by the GSA and was on time and on budget, which included fifteen consultants from across the country on the design team.

Project Highlights

• LEED Gold Certified
• Various layers of light that meet energy code
• Transparent glass façade with wall washed limestone create a nighttime presence
• 6 story atrium

Architect

• William Rawn Associates
• OPN Architects

Location

Project Background

• 286,000 square feet
• $120 million

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