A pilot project aimed at making it easier for francophones to access services at the Ottawa courthouse in their first language will be made permanent, the province announced Wednesday.

The pilot project, which began in 2015, includes clearly displayed information about French language rights with respect to family, criminal, civil and small claims matters.

Public announcements and signs will be in both official languages.

"Making these changes permanent is an important step in building a more accessible justice system for Franco-Ontarians across the province," Attorney General Yasir Naqvi said in a news release.

More than 600,000 francophones live in Ontario, nearly half of them in the eastern part of the province. Ottawa is a designated area under the French Language Services Act, making it mandatory for public institutions to provide access to provincial services in French.  

A final report on the pilot project called Seamless Access to Justice in French will be made available across the province.