GREENFIELD — After years of ready, Hancock County Sheriff Brad Burkhart is getting nearer to his large transfer.
The big, blocky constructing situated off U.S. 40 that may home the county’s new jail is edging nearer to completion, and it’s a facility that won’t solely resolve the sheriff division’s house points however will give the county room to introduce new applications and check out completely different approaches in rehabilitating lawbreakers.
The constructing, on the county farm east of Greenfield, is a transparent distinction with the present jail in downtown Greenfield. Typically cramped, with out ample room for inmates and with out a lot storage or workplace house, the construction, inbuilt 1988, has been outgrown.
It will likely be a while earlier than the brand new jail, being constructed at a price of about $43 million, is open for enterprise. It’s on monitor to be accomplished in November or December, and roughly 80 staff from contractor RQAW are on web site every day. Nevertheless, a lot of the outside work is full, and it’s turning into clear what the completed constructing will appear to be.
County officers who visited the constructing for a tour on Monday, April 5, mentioned they have been happy with the progress.
“It seems quite a bit completely different than the final time I used to be right here,” county council member Keely Butrum mentioned.
The brand new jail, which is able to have the ability to home 400 inmates, has been an extended work in progress for Burkhart. All through the design course of, Burkhart had a variety of enter on what he wished the ability to appear to be in an effort to greatest go well with the wants of his employees. Burkhart mentioned he toured different jails and thinks this facility combines the perfect options of a lot of them.
“To have the ability to take it from a set of drawings to really seeing it, it feels good to see that,” he mentioned.
Hooked up to the jail is the sheriff’s administration constructing, which has its personal entrance. Guests can enter right here if they’ve enterprise with the sheriff’s division, and that is additionally the place interviews with victims and suspects will probably be performed. The administration constructing accommodates workplaces and convention rooms for the sheriff’s division, three interview rooms, and proof cupboard space. There’s additionally an proof lab and an armory.
The sq. footage of the buildings totals 107,200 for jail house and 24,500 for administration house, each a significant enhance over the house on the present facility.
The jail has a separate entrance, so guests won’t should stroll by way of the executive house to conduct visits with the jail. Upon being buzzed into the jail constructing by way of safe doorways, guests will enter an area the place they will conduct visits both nearly or in particular person. Digital go to stations could finally be phased out, Burkhart mentioned, however they’re being inbuilt since COVID-19 social distancing remains to be a priority.
Places of work for jail employees are additionally situated towards the entrance of the constructing, the place they’re separated from the remainder of the jail by two units of safe doorways. The constructing has convention rooms for jail and probation officers, together with a devoted room the place attorneys can meet with their shoppers.
Close to this space, rooms are put aside as areas the place judges may conduct on-site hearings. Burkhart is hoping county judges will conform to conduct some proceedings there to chop down on inmate transportation. (The brand new jail is about two miles from the courthouse.)
That’s not the one function the brand new jail boasts that’s missing on the present facility.
“When you’ve been in our jail presently, we don’t have a medical wing in any respect,” Burkhart mentioned.
Now, this constructing may have house for a health care provider’s and nurse’s workplace in addition to a number of examination rooms.
An consumption space of the constructing accommodates isolation cells and “drunk tanks” the place just lately arrested folks could be positioned. Past that, the jail constructing is split up into three most important blocks, every of which divides into smaller items. The “A” and “B” blocks will home inmates in two- and four-person cells, whereas the “C” block doesn’t have cells; bunks are situated in open house.
The extra open C block will probably be utilized by the jail as an area targeted on rehabilitation and restoration, the place inmates can take part in drug restoration applications, take lessons and take part in different group actions targeted on serving to them make life modifications.
Isolation cells and padded cells are distributed all through the jail in order that jailers don’t should traverse your complete constructing if somebody must be remoted, Burkhart mentioned. The three blocks are every supposed to be largely self-sufficient.
“Each space’s form of self-isolated to have its personal issues, so that you’re not having to go from one to the opposite,” Burkhart mentioned.
The jail has loads of house for cooking, laundry and storage, in addition to an area for a 10-bunk pod that may be occupied by inmate staff. It additionally has room to develop. A part of the constructing is presently a “shell” that might be constructed out to accommodate a further 116 inmates sooner or later. Burkhart mentioned the sheriff’s division could negotiate with federal legislation enforcement businesses to accommodate a few of their prisoners for a time period, in change for an company agreeing to finance the finished development of that a part of the constructing.
Outdoors, there’s additionally loads of empty acreage out there on the campus. With that house, Burkhart hopes to put aside land for gardening and farming that might be used as a part of rehabilitation applications.
“These are issues we’re not used to, have by no means completed, and in order that’s going to be a studying course of down the street on find out how to make that occur,” he mentioned. “…Who is aware of what it might be down the street, although? We actually don’t. It’s actually form of countless, what you could possibly most likely do out right here. You’ve received loads of house.”