Detailed look at S.D state prisons has begun

Capitol News Bureau
KELO Jail Prison Barbed Wire Fence

PIERRE, S.D. (KELO) — An architecture and engineering firm that does projects worldwide has been hired to look at South Dakota’s state prisons in the five cities that host them and develop a master plan.

The $323,000 contract calls for DLR Group to complete work by December 23, 2022. The firm’s Omaha office recently completed the plan for the Nebraska Department of Correctional Services, including justification for a new facility to potentially replace the Nebraska State Penitentiary.

South Dakota Corrections Secretary Mike Leidholt and a DLR representative signed the deal June 3. The firm has done major projects for state corrections systems in Montana, Hawaii, Oregon and Puerto Rico.

South Dakota’s system covers a range of eras, from the historic State Penitentiary for men at Sioux Falls, to the converted college-into-prison for men at Springfield, and the current-period prison for women at Pierre. The department also has community work centers at Yankton and Rapid City.

DOC spokesman Michael Winder said it is “a comprehensive review of the prison system in South Dakota.”

He said the firm will review the existing facilities and look for ways to make more or better use of existing space.

“The firm will also review projected population impacts on the current prison system and provide recommendations to accommodate future needs,” Winder said. Seven firms responded.

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