Bienville Parish Courthouse
Gate Precast

Bienville Project Profile.png

Bienville Parish Police Jury
Arcadia, LA

Project Start Date: 04/01/2011
Precast Erection Start Date: 12/15/2011
Precast Erection Completion Date 03/01/2012
Project Completion Date: 07/15/2013

Total Project Cost: $10.9 million
Square Footage: 50,723 SF
Cost of Precast Concrete: $1.2 million

Involved Companies

Precast Concrete Producer

Gate Precast
1220 HIghway 77 North
Hillsboro, TX 76645


Sutton Beebe & Basbin Architects. LLC
333 Texas Street
Shreveport, LA 71101

Precast Concrete Specialty Engineer

Gate Precast
1220 HIghway 77 North
Hillsboro, TX 76645

Engineer of Record

Fenner Consulting
1543 Grimmett Drive
Shreveport, LA 71107

General Contractor

Lincoln Builders
1910 Farmerville Highway
Ruston, LA 71270



The parish’s existing courthouse was undersized for today’s government and very inefficient as a result of multiple additions. The new design is a 50,000 square foot building that zones departments into two ‘wings’ with a central atrium that solves a longstanding wayfinding problem and gives the building a nice scale. While the owner wanted a state-of-the-art building with respect to technology and communication, they had a desire for at least suggestions of traditional character in the look. The precast stone/precast brick mix allows an interesting exterior aesthetic that was able to utilize traditional detailing in the precast stone while also declaring this to be a building of today. The thought that columns represented a traditional look resulted in using freestanding precast columns to define an entry court while increasing the scale and presence of the complex. The precast tower in front which serves as an open stair also suggests the original Courthouse tower from the early 20th century.

Precast included 38,000 SF of precast components:

  • Insulated precast panels

  • Profile Hardscape

  • 16 decorative precast concrete scuppers in a floral shape

  • 310 total panels

  • All erected in place


The design team essentially wanted a single window module with a dimension of 20' 0" x 36' H. Not being able to ship such a large panel, the precaster was able to re-panelize the single panel design into six individual panels that when erected, gave the architects the look they had envisioned from the beginning.

The six precast panels were comprised of:

  • Two full height wall panels

  • Two stand-alone columns or jambs

  • A corbeled header panel

  • A large 3-sided arch panel


The owner’s desire was to suggest traditional design while constructing a technologically advanced building to conduct the Parish’s business. The precast allowed us to incorporate traditional detailing in the cast stone and combine with brick for an interesting facade that connotes the owner’s idea of a proper look for a public building.

Benefits of using Precast Concrete included:

  • Ability to enclose the building envelope in under 6 weeks

  • Ability to effectively panelize the 30’ wide modules to make it look like a single panel

  • Ability to cast the 3-sided brick arches in a controlled plant environment and set them on the project in one piece

  • Ability to cast the hardscape in a way that fully complements the building proper

Relevant Features

  • Accelerated construction

  • Aesthetic versatility (helped meet project’s aesthetic requirements)

  • Helped meet sustainability goals

  • Cost-benefit

  • Minimized construction site disturbance (e.g. tight site)

  • Contributed to improved IEQ (e.g. no mold, no VOCs, rapid enclosure)

Photos by Sutton Mitchell Beebe & Basin Architects LLC