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Circuit Court Building

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1938, Harry K. Stewart. 3059 Umi St.
  • (Photograph by Augie Salbosa)

Graceful and well proportioned, the Circuit Court is a fine example of a late 1930s Hawaiian adaptation of Spanish Mission style. Sitting on a raised foundation, the symmetrical, single-story, reinforced-concrete building includes the style's hallmarks: stuccoed walls and a red tile roof. But the roof is low pitched and of Hawaiian style, double-pitched and hipped with gablets. In addition, the building features a projecting centered entrance lanai with square columns. Kapa-like concrete blocks incised in a herringbone pattern provide decoration and ventilation for the basement. The circuit court has a cruciform floor plan, and the lanai leads into an octagonal-shaped foyer featuring a coffered ceiling with articulated, low-arched openings that provide access to the other three wings. Originally this building was intended for the park fronting the Kauai County Building; however, as a result of public outcry to maintain the open space, Umi Street was developed and the courthouse relocated to face the new street.

Writing Credits

Don J. Hibbard


What's Nearby


Don J. Hibbard, "Circuit Court Building", [Lihue, Hawaii], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—,

Print Source

Cover: Buildings of Hawaii

Buildings of Hawaii, Don J. Hibbard. Charlottesville: University of Virginia Press, 2011, 65-66.

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