AC Martin Partners


Designed in the early 1920s, the Beaux-Arts/Italian Renaissance Hall of Justice is a fourteen-story, concrete-encased steel frame building clad in granite and ornamental terra cotta. The organization of the exterior facades alludes to the three parts of a classical column—base, shaft, and capital. Each facade features a colonnade composed of eleven granite Doric columns as well as a design motif of festoons, rosettes, and cow skulls. The building also features two rectangular light courts clad with glazed brick.


WJE completed a limited visual survey of the exterior masonry, fenestration, and roofing, documenting representative conditions from grade, the roof, and interior spaces. A 135-foot aerial personnel lift and industrial rope access techniques were used to perform close-up inspections of the granite and terra cotta portions of the facades, which revealed only minor weather-related deterioration. Seismic-related damage to the facade elements was isolated to weak stories at the eighth and ninth floor light courts: classic X-shaped shear cracking of glazed brick masonry infill walls was noted at these locations.

In addition to the visual survey, WJE conducted a cleaning survey to evaluate systems for removing facade soiling and was asked to perform additional services, including the following:

- A detailed investigation/analysis of existing granite and terra cotta anchorage to determine if the existing anchorage systems would meet current seismic code requirements

- Investigation and analysis of existing window anchorage conditions

- Assessment of window mockup testing