Communications Office:
David Bookstaver, Director
Mai Yee, Assistant Director
(212) 428-2500

Date: June 13, 2001

Seal of the Unified Court System
Groundbreaking for New York State's Largest Courthouse
BROOKLYN - Chief Judge Judith S. Kaye and Mayor Rudolph W. Giuliani today broke ground at a site in Brooklyn to begin construction for what will be the largest courthouse ever built in New York State. Rising 473 feet high, consisting of 32 stories and totaling over 1.1 million square feet, the new courthouse will house Family Court and State Supreme Court, Criminal Term, and will be located in the heart of downtown Brooklyn at 330 Jay Street.

Chief Judge Kaye said, "The physical environment of a court should reflect the gravity and seriousness of the business conducted within and engender respect for the administration of justice. In this regard, the buildings that currently house the Family and Supreme Courts in Brooklyn have been woefully inadequate. Now after decades of hardship, these courts will finally have a suitable home at 330 Jay Street for the nearly 6,000 court users who routinely enter their doors daily. This exciting new project in Brooklyn is part of New York City's master plan for the renovation and construction of courthouses in all five boroughs. On behalf of the Judiciary, I want to thank the City for its support and cooperation in providing New Yorkers suitable, proper court facilities that befit the administration of justice."

Mayor Giuliani stated, "The impact this building will have on this community and those who conduct their business within its walls is one of the most important aspects of the Court Master Plan. And as is the case with all the other projects that make up the plan, this building is designed to ensure that court proceedings occur in dignified surroundings and to convey to everyone who comes here the importance of our legal system. This building will stand as a fixed expression of our City's deep dedication to the institutions of the family and the courts."

The Kings County Family Court will relocate from its current location at 283 Adams Street, while the Supreme Court will relocate from two separate facilities at 360 Adams Street and 120 Schermerhorn Street. The two courts will occupy 25 stories at the new 330 Jay Street courthouse, which will contain 84 courtrooms and hearing rooms, as well as office space for judge's chambers and court-related agencies, such as the Administration for Children's Services, the Department of Corrections, the Department of Juvenile Justice, the Department of Probation, the New York City Police Department, Corporation Counsel, the Kings County District Attorney, Victim Services/Safe Horizons, Legal Aid, the State Office of Children and Family Services, and the Department of Mental Health.

Chief Administrative Judge Jonathan Lippman said, "The new courthouse in Brooklyn - the largest ever to be built in the state of New York and the cornerstone of the City's capital facilities plan - will accommodate the borough's Family Court and Supreme Court, Criminal Term. The facility will ensure for decades to come a dignified environment in which to house the important workings of the Court. The new Jay Street courthouse will provide the public and the justice community of Brooklyn the decent court facilities they have needed for so long and will be a model for courthouses around the state, as well as around the country."

"With the construction of 330 Jay Street, the Kings County Family Court, the New York Supreme Court and the important public agencies that work with them will at long-last operate in spaces befitting their vital role in our society," said Bruce Ratner, President and Chief Executive Officer of Forest City Ratner Companies, the developer of the courthouse project. "The state-of-the-art courtrooms and offices in this building are what we owe to everyone who enters these courts every day seeking justice."
The design, construction and outfitting of the new courthouse will cost over $600 million and is being financed by bonds issued on behalf of the City of New York. The Perkins Eastman architectural firm has been retained for this project. Construction is scheduled to be completed by the spring of 2005.