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Open Day - Sunday 5 May 2019

The European Court of Human Rights is holding an open day to mark its 60th anniversary!

This iconic building, normally closed to visitors, has not been open to the public for 10 years.

The ECHR has been based since 1995 in the Human Rights Building, designed by British architect Richard Rogers. Also known as the “Strasbourg Court”, it monitors respect for the rights and fundamental freedoms of individuals within the jurisdiction of the 47 member States of the Council of Europe. It is in this highly symbolic edifice that human rights are worked out on a daily basis and democratic values and respect for the individual are consolidated across the greater Europe.

Composed of glass, metal and Vosges sandstone, the Human Rights Building seems to be moored to the banks of the Ill river, following its curve like the ship to which it is frequently compared. In 2015 the building was awarded the label “Architecture contemporaine remarquable”.

To mark the Council of Europe’s 70th anniversary, the Palais de l’Europe, the organisation’s main building, will also open its doors to the public on 5 May 2019.

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Human Rights Building

The Court is based in Strasbourg, in the Human Rights Building.

Designed by the British architect Lord Richard Rogers (2007 Pritzker Prize Laureate), this highly symbolic and emblematic building is part of the French cultural heritage and was awarded the “Architecture contemporaine remarquable” label in 2015.

To mark the 20th anniversary of the Human Rights Building, the Court staged an exhibition in September 2015, inaugurated by President Spielmann in the presence, among others, of Gabriella Battaini-Dragoni, Deputy Secretary General of the Council of Europe, and Ivan Harbour, who worked on the Building’s design and is now a partner in the architectural firm Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners.

Rogers Stirk & Harbour Partnership

More info     Virtual visit

Film - 20th Anniversary - HR Building

Speech - Dean Spielmann

Speech - Deputy Secretary General - CoE

Exhibition - HR Building - Visit of Ivan Harbour

Ivan Harbour's lecture (in French only) - Zénith

Message from Richard Rogers

The different architectural designs

Amendments to the winning project

Construction of the Human Rights Building

Around the Human Rights Building

The Human Rights Building today

What they said about it


The Court is identifiable across the world by the symbol of the building in which it is housed: the Human Rights Building.

47 judges and about 650 Registry staff work there to ensure respect for the human rights of 820 million Europeans in the 47 member States of the Council of Europe that have ratified the Convention.