Construction has commenced on the Bernie McCabe Second District Court of Appeal Courthouse in downtown St. Petersburg, located at 525 Mirror Lake Drive. This $59 million courthouse is near landmarks such as the Pinellas County Clerk of Court, St. Petersburg City Hall, and other government buildings. It bears the name of Bernie McCabe, the late State Attorney for Florida’s Sixth Judicial Circuit, which serves both Pinellas and Pasco Counties.
As reported on St. Pete Rising, previously, the Sebring Building, established in 1968, occupied the site. This building was razed in 2022 to pave the way for the new facility after serving as a location for state government offices. “The design process for our new courthouse is nearing completion, and we’ve initiated the site and foundational work,” shared Judge Daniel H. Sleet, Chief Judge of Florida’s Second District Court of Appeal. He further expressed gratitude to various stakeholders, stating, “We appreciate the collaboration of Florida’s Department of Management Services, our architect, the construction team, and the City of St. Petersburg on this venture. We are committed to updating the community on our advancements.”
Encompassing three stories, the Bernie McCabe Second District Court of Appeal Courthouse will span 53,000 square feet. It will feature 15 judicial chambers, a courtroom, and work areas to accommodate 95 full-time staff members.
Currently, the Second District Court of Appeal is operating in a classroom in downtown Tampa, with plans to transition from Lakeland to St. Petersburg. This move has been in the pipeline for some time. The Florida Legislature allocated $50 million in 2021 for the new courthouse and added another $9 million in a subsequent session.
The architectural plans for the courthouse are overseen by the Orlando-based DLR Group, with St. Pete-based Wannemacher Jensen Architects as the Associate Architect. Skanska USA is managing the construction aspect of the project.
Initial groundwork has been laid, and vertical construction is slated to commence in the upcoming months. The exact date of completion remains unspecified.