New Renderings Revealed as Hudson County Courthouse Sets Groundbreaking

Hudson County Courthouse Jersey City Aerial
Image courtesy of the Hudson County Improvement Authority.

One of the largest public developments in New Jersey will be ending 2020 with a big step forward, as a contract has been awarded and construction will commence at several Jersey City parcels.

The Frank J. Guarini Justice Complex, set to rise at several properties near Journal Square, has been in the works for some time. The $345 million scheme will replace Hudson County’s outdated Administration Building at 595 Newark Street with a new five-story structure across the street that is designed by New York City-based Rafael Viñoly Architects.

Hudson County Courthouse Jersey City Central Ave
Looking down Central Avenue. Image courtesy of the Hudson County Improvement Authority.

Jersey Digs was the first news outlet to reveal the preliminary look of the facility back in February and the summer saw major work on the area’s infrastructure. Cook Street has been eliminated and several local roads were reconfigured to allow an extension of Central Avenue that connects with Newark Avenue. Oakland Avenue was also widened to accommodate two-way traffic as part of the work.

Hudson County Courthouse Jersey City Street Level 2
Image courtesy of the Hudson County Improvement Authority.

Hudson county has officially awarded a contract for the courthouse portion of the project. Wood-Ridge-based Terminal Construction Corporation has already begun to mobilize and work is expected to begin before the end of the year.

“After many years of planning, this once-in-a-generation transformational project is finally breaking ground and underway,” said Hudson County Executive Thomas A. DeGise in a statement. “While the courthouse will be a catalyst for the revitalization of the neighborhood, the community will begin to see immediate traffic improvement benefits as we complete improvements to the roadway network as the first phase of construction.”

Terminal Construction is required to enter into a Project Labor Agreement for the endeavor, which will create up to 600 well-paying construction jobs. The Hudson County Improvement Authority is committed to working with building trades to maximize minority apprenticeships on the courthouse work, which they claim will have the largest component of small, minority, women and veteran-owned vendors of any project in the county’s history.

Hudson County Courthouse Jersey City Interior 1
Image courtesy of the Hudson County Improvement Authority.

The future justice complex, which will be certified LEED Silver, is set to feature 24 courtrooms, jury assembly spaces, various offices, the Sheriff’s Department, a 75-seat public food court, a self-help law library, a children’s play area, and training spaces. The facility will also include a 459-space parking garage to be built along Route 139 that will be separated from the courthouse by a pedestrian plaza.

Hudson County Courthouse Jersey City Interior 2
Image courtesy of the Hudson County Improvement Authority.

Hudson county released a new video better detailing the facility, which includes a first look at the interior. The complex will be glass-heavy, feature several breezeways, and provide great natural light and views of the surrounding area.

Hudson County Courthouse Jersey City Plaza
Image courtesy of the Hudson County Improvement Authority.

The new courthouse will be named after former U.S. Congressman Frank Guarini, who donated a parcel of land for the project and was recently presented with a framed rendering as a token of appreciation. The existing Brennan Courthouse will also be getting a light renovation as part of the project, which is slated to be completed by 2023.

Hudson County Courthouse Jersey City Street Level 1
Image courtesy of the Hudson County Improvement Authority.

After the new facility is open, Hudson county has agreed to give up control of their current Administration Building at 595 Newark Avenue. Jersey City will be responsible for tearing down the structure and constructing a three-acre park in a deal was announced late last year.


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  1. The design looks like it will repel pedestrian activity, with long frontages of windowless stone and parking structures. Reminds me of some brutalist architecture (City Hall in Boston, for example) that elevates the government and makes it seem inaccessible to citizens.

  2. Looks like they added the horizontal glass enclosure on the 2nd/ 3rd levels to make the top seem less clunky. Brutalist architecture has it’s place but this is still an ass ugly structure completely devoid of any aesthetic value.

  3. Some of the aesthetic choices that are being panned here were made for security purposes. That said, I like the interior renderings a lot.

  4. These idiots are building a new Court House rather than fix the unemployment system….. Bro I absolutely hate this county and all of it county officials… By the way the building looks nothing like a court house…. Looks like God has a new toilet bowl

  5. Stylistically this building is more post-Modern than midcentury but the whole thing is just too cold, hard, clunky and uninviting as a public building. Compare the elegant vibe of the old Beaux-Arts courthouse across the street. I get that times change and I’m not suggesting the old building should be reproduced, however there is just nothing artful about this design.

    The glass walkway is just plain stupid and with no shades will get as hot as a Dutch oven with the sun beating down on it in the warmer months. The cost to cool it will be ridiculous. But hey it’s only taxpayer money.


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