Located in Merced, Calif., the 58,000-square-foot Merced County Courthouse is located in the civic/justice district, a block from the historic courthouse. The design, in keeping with the original history and architecture, draws from elements found in the historic courthouse.
The architect created a design that exploited the economies of Tilt-Up concrete panel construction to produce highly articulated façades with deep reveals, recessed windows and a punched parapet. The tower that punctuates the long axis of the building serves to signify the building entrance, while making a symbolic reference to the many towers found throughout the city. The landscaping mimics the orchards of the valley and reinforces the building’s deference to regional elements. The resulting expression is contemporary but congruent with the traditional image of courthouse architecture desired by the client.
The Tilt-Up system allowed the elimination of steel columns at the exterior, thus reducing cost and eliminated the boxing out of columns on the exterior public corridor. Tilt-Up also provided the security for bullet-resistance, and to some degree, blast resistance. The construction medium was also selected because it resulted in an economical expression of the architectural vision.
This project used ordinary materials to achieve an extraordinary design.
Merced, CA 95340
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