New Maine Judicial Center to Consolidate Four Courthouses

By CN Staff

BIDDEFORD, Maine—A brand-new courthouse is planning a spring launch in the Pine Tree state, with the aim to truly embrace ‘justice for all’ while being eco-friendly as well.

Finegold Alexander was selected to do the planning and design for the new York Judicial Center in Biddeford, Maine. The state-of-the-art courthouse will consolidate four existing York County Courthouses into a single Judicial Center (District, Superior, Civil, and Family with arraignment, trial and non-jury style courtrooms of various sizes). The building was designed with sustainability, universal accessibility and inclusivity in mind and all the courtrooms have natural light.

Here’s a quick overview of the project and facility:

Number of SF: 118,560 gsf
Number of Floors: 3, plus basement and mechanical penthouse
Number of courtrooms: 10
Grand Opening: Est. April 2023
Address: 515 Elm Street, Biddeford, ME


  • Designed as a highly sustainable, net zero energy ready building
  • PEUI 27.9 vs National Median of 101.2
  • All electric building
  • No fossil fuel consumption
  • 70 Ground source heat exchangers
  • Rooftop PVs

Interior Features:

  • 10 courtrooms – all provide natural light
  • A mediation suite to accommodate Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) and address ideas of transformative/restorative justice
  • 27 public conference rooms most have natural light
  • Other spaces include: Judicial Suite, Clerks’ Department, Attorney Suite, Jury Pool / Multi-purpose Room, Jury deliberation rooms, detention holding areas, support areas
  • Gender neutral bathrooms and lactation room
  • Public lobby, stairs and waiting rooms provide wooded views and natural light to help reduce stress
  • 1% for art program will include opportunity for artists


  • Delivery and detention vehicles arrive using separate, ramped drive
  • Three separate parking areas with increasing levels of security: two public visitor and staff parking lots are located to the East of the building, and the secure Judges’ parking is located to the North.
  • Three separate circulation paths – public, staff, detention – provide safety and security for all users

Exterior Features:

  • Location: Biddeford, Maine
  • Courthouse is free-standing in the meadowed portion of the site
  • Public plaza is to the south and overlooks car drop-off area
  • Tan brick that references the stone found on site
  • Regularly spaced columns within the curtainwall with piers that shift with varied spacing speak to the stability / framework of precedent laws as well as the mutability of the law.
  • EV Chargers in parking lot
  • Universally accessible

Project Team:

  • Contractor: Consigli Construction
  • Structural Engineer: Thornton Tomasetti
  • MEP/FP Engineer: Arup, USA
  • Sustainable Design Consultant: The Green Engineer, Inc
  • Civil Engineer: Gorrill Palmer Consulting Engineers, Inc
  • Code Research: Cosentini Associates
  • Cost Estimating: Faithful+Gould
  • Landscape Architect: Richardson & Associates
  • Interior Design: Arrowstreet
  • Signage: Arrowstreet
  • Acoustics: Cavanaugh Tocci Associates
  • AV Consultants: Cavanaugh Tocci Associates
  • Lighting Design: Arup, USA
  • Specifications: Mark Wilhelm