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NCSC report, design challenge to inspire innovative approaches to space planning

NCSC report, design challenge to inspire innovative approaches to space planning

October 19, 2022 -- As courts continue to expand access and respond to changing demands from the public, leaders should also consider how the physical courthouse, too, must reForm.

NCSC’s new Court Space reForm report examines how future court facility planning requires flexibility to accommodate operational changes that support court service trends while creating sustainable court environments that encourage forward‚Äźthinking operational practices.

Insights gained from 560 survey responses from rural and urban courts across the country helped NCSC identify areas of focus that impact design such as use of technology, expanding public access, remote proceedings, remote customer service, and remote workers.

“The shift to remote operations and online services has presented challenges but even more opportunities. Courts worldwide are looking at redefining sustainable court space with new design concepts to support innovative court operations today and into the future," said David Sayles, an NCSC senior court management consultant. "By taking a systemic approach, courts have been able to plan and integrate service advances in the physical environment that ensure efficient court operations and capitalize on opportunities to improve access to justice.”

To build on this progress, NCSC is looking to you and your innovative courthouse designs to learn even more about how courts are addressing emerging needs and demands through the Court Space reDesign Challenge.

Between now and December, state courts are invited to submit space planning and design examples that illustrate new and reconstructed court spaces that support innovative ways of conducting business. NCSC encourages participation from courts of all jurisdictions.

Up to 10 projects will be selected, with one representative invited to participate in an expense-paid National Judicial Court Space Innovation Workshop in late Spring 2023. In addition, the selected projects will receive national recognition through a Court Space Innovation Showcase Documentary and/or no-cost technical assistance from NCSC experts.

Entries are due by December 16, 2022, and winners will be announced in January 2023.

Contact David Sayles or visit the CourtSpace reDesign Challenge on the web for additional information and to submit your project today!


Join national experts for Oct. 25 virtual event on mental health & the courts

MHTFAfter a multi-year investigation, the National Judicial Task Force to Examine State Courts’ Response to Mental Illness will release its findings and recommendations to assist state courts with responding to the needs of court-involved individuals with serious mental illness. On Tuesday, Oct. 25, NCSC will host a virtual discussion with national experts who will highlight the potential impacts of the recommendations and partnerships created between state courts, federal agencies, and the behavioral health community. Register today for Examining Mental Health & the Courts: A Discussion with National Experts


Las Vegas Justice Court receives $1.25 million NCSC eviction diversion grant

EDI Las VegasLast week, NCSC joined the Las Vegas Justice Court to announce a $1.25 million Eviction Diversion Initiative grant to strengthen eviction diversion efforts and improve housing stability across Clark County. Funding for the program was made possible through a $10 million Wells Fargo Foundation grant awarded to NCSC earlier this year. “We are grateful for the commitment from the Wells Fargo Foundation which allows NCSC to assist courts in developing sustainable solutions to prevent avoidable evictions. We’re also encouraged by courts like Las Vegas that recognize the need to permanently change how courts approach housing problems,” said NCSC President Mary C. McQueen.

Pictured above (left to right): NCSC representatives Emma Farrell, Danielle Hirsch and Samira Nazem join Chief Judge Melissa Saragosa of the Las Vegas Justice Court and Wells Fargo representatives Eileen Fitzgerald, Wendell Blaylock and Brian Formisano for the program announcement.