Photographer: Philippe van Gelooven/ Filip Dujardin/ Bieke Claessens The new Court of Justice is an open, transparent building with direct public access, combining the Court of Justice with a university library and auditoriums for the faculty of law. In keeping with the building’s logistical requirements and safety provisions, the structure is divided into three separate units: courtrooms, the library for students and an office tower with a 64-meters-high panorama restaurant on top from which offers a panoramic view of the city of Hasselt and its surroundings.
The Court of Justice is one of two significant public projects within the new urban development around the main rail station. References include the old industrial steel structures that formerly occupied and defined the site. Their organic Belgian Art Nouveau forms constitute part of the cultural heritage of Hasselt. In addition to being the Hasselt town emblem, “there are also echoes of a tree,” also harks back to the historic pre-medieval European tradition of holding a special “place of speaking justice” underneath a large tree in the center of a dwelling.