October 8, 2002
Governor John Engler today was on hand to speak at the dedication ceremony of the new Michigan Hall of Justice, which completes the Capitol Complex at the edge of downtown Lansing.
"Welcome home," Engler said to justices of the Supreme Court and judges of the Court of Appeals. "This is an historic and fulfilling day."
The Hall of Justice features a state-of-the-art Learning Center for visitors of all ages. The building has been designed to encourage citizens to enter and learn about the judicial branch of government.
"The Learning Center with its hands-on exhibits is second to none - an educational treasure-trove," Engler said, created for children and citizens interested in learning how Michigan's court system works. People will also learn how the U.S. judiciary is dependent on centuries of precedents, going back to colonial America and to the British Isles.
The Governor called the Hall of Justice "a magnificent building worthy of Michigan."
Engler noted how the building's classical features "complement one of the most beautiful state capitols in the nation."
He remarked on the many symbolic features that are incorporated into the architecture. He commented, for example, on the significance of the glass dome that "lets light into our judiciary."
"Moreover, the building's north and south wings gesture toward the other branches of government, which is highly symbolic since it is the legislature that makes laws and the judiciary that interprets laws in light of the Constitution.
"The building is made of limestone and marble that symbolize the permanent things on which our constitutional republic is founded - justice, ordered freedom, and self-government under the rule of law."
The Governor concluded by calling the building "the finest state judicial edifice in the United States - a fitting home for the finest judiciary in the United States."
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