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Chief Judge's Statement upon Approval of Design Concept of New Des Moines U.S. Courthouse

Thursday, May 23, 2019

The United States District Court for the Southern District of Iowa is pleased to announce that on May 22, 2019, the General Services Administration (GSA) Public Buildings Commissioner approved the design for the new federal courthouse in Des Moines. This approval permits the court to make images of the new courthouse design available to the public. The court has anxiously awaited this day.

The court is appreciative of action by the Judicial Conference of the United States recognizing the critical need for a new federal courthouse in Des Moines. The court is thankful to Congress and President Obama for appropriating sufficient funds to design and build a facility that will serve the public for many decades to come.

The building is designed to be recognizable as an important civic structure. The design embraces the river, the Principal Riverwalk, our immediate neighbors and the city of Des Moines as a whole. It reflects the dignity and solemnity customarily associated with a courthouse. It evokes images of transparency in government and will provide an intuitive experience for all who attend court functions. It provides the security necessary for a modern courthouse, utilizing mature trees as a significant security feature.

The existing federal courthouse has some beautiful spaces. Unfortunately, beauty is not enough. The court looks forward to a new facility that safely serves the public, enhances the community and continues to provide justice for all.

See photos of the new design below (Courtesy of Mack Scogin Merrill Elam Architects):

Further information and additional images: