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Tribunal de Grande Instance


Tribunal d’Instance

Data sheet


Client: French Ministry of Justice


Surface area: 13,000m²

Construction costs: 30 million €

Design contest: 1992

Start of construction: 1992

Delivery: 1996


Project Manager: Bruno Augry

Associate Project architect: Garcia Diaz and Jean Planes

Landscaping: Liliane Grunig

Tribel Lighting: Georges Berne

Engineering: INGEROP SEEE

law court - Montpellier - entry squarelaw court - Montpellier - main public halllaw court - Montpellier - study superposed on a site photographylaw court - Montpellier - airial viewlaw court - Montpellier - semi circular exterior patiolaw court - Montpellier - court roomlaw court - Montpellier - architect's tribute to the 500 persons who collaborated to built the law courtlaw court - Montpellier - public accesslaw court - Montpellier - one of the public circulationslaw court - Montpellier - competition study - main room and court roomlaw court - Montpellier -  transparencies toward the entrance court - the library - the Peyrou garden beyondlaw court - Montpellier - ground floor planlaw court - Montpellier - main public halllaw court - Montpellier - project diagramatic explanation - from concept to designlaw court - Montpellier - height limitation imposed with the respect to the Peyrou gardenlaw court - Montpellier - public circulation separated from the wall, allowing natural daylight to filter belowlaw court - Montpellier - transparency toward the main courtlaw court - Montpellier - study - one of the court rooms - light from above which signifies a "presence"


The design brief


Enrich the neighborhood by the design of a building that reflects the character of the legal institution.


Create an open and clear space in which employees and visitors feel respected and understood.


Combine both a sense of monumentality while keeping a human scale in an attempt to reduce the anxiety of users of such a facility.

The project


The project In the historic heart of the city, the courthouse is accessible by a succession of transitional spaces emanating from the main Square Peyrou.


The constructive vocabulary is deliberately clear and readable.

The design efforts of openness, transparence and verticality introduce spatial qualities other than those specifically attributed to the institution of justice.


The courtrooms are linked to the large public lobby, the functional heart of the building, as are the main circulation paths.

All of the offices are organized around semi circular planted gardens. Natural daylight is predominant, from skylights as well as large glass facades.

Exposed concrete of a warm color and natural stone on the outside, to which is added and the use of wood inside all come together to create a strong yet welcoming presence.