$65 Million Facility Rounds Out County Justice Campus

ST. CHARLES, Ill. — Kane County officials unveiled a new $65 million justice center that includes a 640-bed jail and consolidates law enforcement offices and operations.

The 236,000-square-foot Kane County Adult Justice Center was developed adjacent to the existing county courts and juvenile detention center to create an 80-acre criminal justice campus designed to enhance the operational efficiency of the criminal justice system, reduce costs and improve safety and security.

“Through bringing together the sheriff’s office, jail and courts, we were able to not only address the immediate challenge of jail overcrowding, but also position the county to meet its criminal justice needs for years to come,” says Karen McConnaughay, chair of the county board.

The existing 400-bed Kane County Jail suffered chronic overcrowding during the last decade as the inmate population increased almost 60 percent. Average daily population levels of approximately 500 inmates forced the county to house inmates in other jurisdictions.

Built in 1975, the structure did not meet modern standards for safety and security and its aging infrastructure, buildings systems and equipment required regular repairs.

The new facility is composed of two six-story jail towers with a combined capacity of 640 beds and includes shell space for future expansion for a total of 768 beds. The 33,000-square-foot sheriff’s office, which incorporates space for administration and operations is housed in a two-story facility that provides direct access to both jail towers.

Project team members join Kane County officials to unveil the new $65 million county justice center.
The central, two-story building also houses jail support services, a medical infirmary, inmate intake and processing, and kitchen and laundry facilities. A secure walkway connects the new justice center to existing criminal justice buildings.

The south tower contains 32 dormitory-style housing units constructed with precast concrete panels. The north tower includes 96 precast, prefabricated double-cell modules that arrived on site fully complete from Egyptian Concrete Co., of Salem.

“They were painted, outfitted with detention equipment and furnishings, plumbed, wired and then erected in only 6 days, expediting the project schedule,” says Greg Werner, vice president and general manager of M.A. Mortenson Construction.

Mortenson and Lamp Inc. provided construction management services on the justice center project. The project team located mechanical, electrical and plumbing systems for both housing units in a maintenance corridor behind the cell walls for ease of access and increased security and safety.

“Precautions were taken every step of the way to ensure proper placement of each building component as well as a rigorous test of the mechanical, access control and surveillance systems,” Werner says.