Virginia Public-Private Model Delivers Regional Jail Addition

STAFFORD, Va. — Local officials unveiled a new $49 million, 432-bed addition to the Rappahannock Regional Jail that was completed in 18 months to help alleviate overcrowding.

The two-story podular addition incorporates a mezzanined four-level housing configuration that delivers 432 beds. The new pod is designed as a hybrid classification setting that can accommodate medium- to maximum-security inmates.

The expansion and renovation of the 264,000-square-foot, 654-bed regional jail is one of the first public safety projects completed under state legislation that promotes public-private partnership on public building projects.

The 2002 Public-Private Education Facilities and Infrastructure Act permits government agencies to accept unsolicited proposals from private entities for public sector building and infrastructure projects.

The legislation seeks to generate cost and time savings through public-private partnerships that bring private sector expertise to bear on public construction projects and encourage innovative approaches to construction and financing.

The streamlined public-private procurement process and expedited design-build delivery method generated significant timeline and scheduling efficiencies that were instrumental in bringing the project to completion sooner than would have been possible with conventional project delivery methods, officials say.

“The process not only hastened the construction start-up, but also afforded the staff of RRJ to customize the design of the facility,” says Superintendent Joe Higgs.

Architectural and engineering firm PSA-Dewberry, headquartered in Peoria, Ill., joined with Dallas-based Balfour Beatty Construction to head up the design-build team. PSA-Dewberry also provided security electronics and interior design services on the project.

Dewberry, the parent company of PSA headquartered in Fairfax, Va., provided civil engineering services. Local firm Hankins & Anderson provided mechanical, electrical and structural engineering services.

The project team also renovated areas of the existing facility, which was constructed in 2000, to enhance operational efficiency and better serve expanded needs.

The jail’s inmate intake/processing area was modernized and improved and storage areas were expanded. The team also reconfigured the existing video visitation area and added new operational space for the magistrate.

Established in 1968, Rappahannock Regional Jail serves the city of Fredericksburg and the counties of King George, Stafford and Spotsylvania.