U.S. Courts Design Guide
Most acoustical decisions require a trade-off between cost, speech privacy,
and speech intelligibility. These compromises can be anticipated and factored
into the cost and performance of the project.
For other spaces in the courthouse, except as noted in Chapters 4 through 12, refer to
the acoustical requirements in Facilities Standards for the Public Buildings Service.
Finishes in Interior Spaces
Finishes in the interior of the courthouse must be practical yet reflect the seriousness
of the judicial mandate and the dignity of the judicial system. This section provides
general guidelines for finishes in the courthouse. Refer to individual chapters
containing detailed information on specific types of spaces.
The selection of finish materials must be
appropriate for the specific space uses and
compatible with the project budget.
A limited palette of finishes that responds to
construction-cost limitations, optimizes life-
cycle cost, and satisfies functional
requirements should be selected for each
The interior architecture of public spaces in the courthouse should reflect a civic
presence. Finishes in lobbies and corridors should serve as an extension of the
exterior. Materials used must be both durable and low maintenance. Elevator lobbies
on floors housing courts must be considered an extension of the main public lobby
spaces. Similarly, for floors currently not housing courts, but designated for court