Payne Design Group Architects collaborates on design of federal courthouse in Huntsville

Payne Design Group Architects
Fentress Architects’ Revit program allowed the GSA to see details of the exterior design created by Lee H. Sims with Payne Design Group Architects.

Payne Design Group Architects teamed with Fentress Architects on the design of the Federal Courthouse in Huntsville.

Montgomery-based Payne, led by Partner in Charge David H. Payne, was notified in August, 2019, that his firm had been chosen by the General Services Administration as the Small Business Set Aside architectural firm for the 123,000-square-foot, multi-level courthouse.

The proposals for architectural firms on the project was published in late 2018, which led to David Payne meeting with Washington-based Fentress Architects Senior Principal and Lead Designer Steve White to collaborate on the project.

At that time, David Payne also asked Lee Sims, who had designed the Frank M. Johnson Jr. Federal Courthouse and the Alabama Supreme Court Building, both in Montgomery, to join Payne Design Group Architects to serve as courthouse designer.

Payne Design was chosen after two federal judges in the North Alabama District, Senior Judge Liles Burke and recently retired Senior Judge Lynwood Smith, stressed that they wanted a classically designed structure for Huntsville. The final exterior design went through several revisions before the clients approved Sims’ three story, slightly curved exterior design.

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The final interior spatial layout, designed by David Payne, met the GSA’s program spatial requirements “better than any other courthouse project in recent history,” according to the senior GSA architect overseeing the design. The design was illustrated and carefully detailed through the Revit computer program that is used by White with Fentress Architects.

Construction on the courthouse is expected to be complete in early 2024.

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