Supporting the Nation's Judicial System & the Public it Serves


New Online Assessment Tool to Guide Future Space Planning

To help courts plan for future space requirements, NCSC has launched a Modern Courthouse Self-Assessment Tool that examines existing building space and provides guidance on new courthouse space planning and design trends. Responses collected in the interactive questionnaire offer insights for potential remodels and new construction by assessing current courthouse design and current and future service requirements. At the end of the assessment, courts receive a summary report that can assist with defining, planning and reforming space needs to support and enhance updated court operations.

“Future court facilities should continue to be planned with robust integrated technologies without losing sight of the needs of self-represented litigants or those with limited access to technology,” said David Sayles, an NCSC senior court management consultant. “The tool provides some insights into planning considerations for these spaces and connects the survey to other resources within the national center on various topics.”

The self-assessment tool also offers a courtroom construction cost calculator. According to Sayles, the calculator offers a high-level, “rough, order of magnitude” estimate that compares construction costs of hybrid courtrooms and traditional, fully in-person courtrooms. 

For courts already exploring future space needs and design, NCSC has extended the deadline to enter the Court Space reDesign Challenge. Selected projects will be showcased nationally or have the opportunity to receive no-cost technical assistance, with a representative eligible to participate in the National Judicial Court Space Innovation Workshop in late Spring/early Summer 2023. The deadline to submit entries is Friday, February 17th, 2023.