Lake County Courthouse Expansion
Waukegan, Ill.
Award of Merit

Owner: Lake County
Lead Design Firm/Structural Engineer: AECOM
Construction Manager: Clark Construction
M/E/P Engineer: Syska Hennessy

During this $150-million expansion—which added a new nine-story, 200,000-sq-ft tower to the courthouse complex—the team had to maintain secure transportation of prisoners from the jail to the courthouse.  Clark served as the construction manager at-risk for this three-phase expansion.

A bridge connecting the existing court tower and jail was used for prisoner transport before the expansion. For the project’s first phase, a new tunnel was constructed, creating a secure transportation corridor below ground.

In the second phase, crews constructed the court tower, which includes 12 courtrooms and unfinished space for six future courtrooms. The design called for retaining the bridge and converting it to a public connection between the new court tower and the jail.

To enable this, the existing bridge was supported with a driven sheet pile earth retention system and bridge shoring towers. Once the support of the bridge was secure, the project team demolished half of the bridge’s structure to allow construction of the court tower.

The Clark Construction team then excavated the basement of the new tower approximately 40 ft directly below the existing bridge. The remaining section of the bridge was reconnected to the new tower and reclad with glass curtain wall. For the final phase, crews renovated the Babcox Justice Center, which included remodeling the courts and jail intake and booking areas.

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