11 August 2017

Handover of the Paris Law Courts

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After 40 months of works, the production and engineering teams of the Arélia consortium, made up of Bouygues Bâtiment Ile-de-France and Bouygues Energies & Services, handed over the Paris Law Courts, located in the Clichy-Batignolles eco-neighbourhood to the north of the capital. Designed by Renzo Piano, this will be the largest law court complex in Europe.

On the morning of Wednesday, July 26, the safety commission of the Paris Law Courts construction project met on-site and officially recommended that the building could open to the public. On July 28, the process of reception by the Ministry of Justice was completed after approximately 5 months of trials and tests to verify the project’s compliance with the specifications of the partnership contact.

“Congratulations to all our men and women on this great human achievement! Today, all their efforts are rewarded by the satisfaction of having created a building whose height and audacity will establish it as a new masterpiece among the architectural diversity of Paris,” acknowledges Bernard Mounier, CEO of Arélia and of Bouygues Bâtiment Ile-de-France.

Paris Law Courts

An architectural and technical achievement

Designed by architect Renzo Piano, whose previous successes include the Pompidou Centre in Paris, the Paris Law Courts complex stands 160 metres tall with 39 storeys and 175,000 m² of surface area, and is made up of three elements: the pedestal contains the courtrooms; connected to it, the “bastion” houses the detention cells; and there are three blocks of administrative and judicial offices forming the tower.

Up to 2,200 site workers, 180 supervision personnel and 600 subcontracting companies have been engaged on building this extraordinary construction. The teams have faced a number of technical challenges, such as the lowering of the water table, the pouring of the raft, the use of sliding formwork and the construction of the “wasp waists”. Another big challenge to be met was the way a high-rise office building is “stacked” on top of a public access building (the pedestal containing the main concourse and 92 courtrooms), each of them complying with different fire regulations.


The Paris Law Courts: a modern, efficient and environmentally friendly instrument of justice

The project came about as a result of a desire to remedy the inadequate physical conditions in which justice is administered in Paris. The Palais de Justice on the Île de la CIté is a prestigious building but the interior is cramped, inefficient and often antiquated. The Paris Law Courts will symbolise 21st century justice. In particular, the courtrooms will be equipped with integrated multimedia and videoconferencing facilities, while the building is also a benchmark for environmental performance: it has both HQE (High Environmental Quality) certification and the BBC (Low Consumption Building) label, and its energy consumption is half that of the most recently built office towers in La Défense.


The new Paris Law Courts will house all the departments of the district court on a single site; they were previously scattered over six court complexes spread around the city. The building will also be home to all twenty of the capital’s local civil courts. Around 9,000 people will access the facility every day.


Entering service in 2018

Bouygues Bâtiment Ile-de France teams will carry out additional works until the second quarter of 2018 to ensure that the building is in conformity with recent legislation introduced to bring French courts into the 21st century and to create space to house the police forces who will be responsible for the security of the building, with the capacity to reinforce security in the event of future terrorist threats.

For its part, Bouygues Energies & Services, which carried out the low voltage, multimedia, radio-communication and security packages, will be responsible for maintaining the building and for providing a number of other services (cleaning, fire safety, public reception, etc.) as soon as the customer takes possession of the facility in early August for the 27-year duration of the partnership contract.

The Paris Law Courts will be brought into service during the second quarter of 2018.