Work to start on Inverness-based justice centre

HIGHLAND Council has given the green light to an updated design of Scotland’s first purpose-built justice centre in Inverness.

The Scottish Courts and Tribunals Service (SCTS) submitted plans for the facility, designed by Reiach & Hall,  back in May, with the final decision on full planning permission granted at September’s meeting of Highland Council’s south planning committee.

The “improved” design has been described as more efficient in the use of accommodation and “provides an attractive public space, along with improved access”.

Eric McQueen, SCTS chief executive said, “Rather than simply a replacement sheriff court building, the justice centre will play a pivotal role in changing victims’, witnesses’ and offenders’ experience of the justice system, while providing high quality secure criminal courts, and flexible accommodation for our civil courts and tribunal users.”

Contractor Robertson Northern is expected to complete the main building works in 2019.

Frank Reid, managing director of Robertson Construction Northern added, “Today’s decision means we can start work on what will be a significant development for the Scottish justice system and we’re looking forward to bringing this improved design to life over the months ahead.”