Calaveras County Jail to Open This Summer

SAN ANDREAS, Calif. — On track for a summer 2013 opening, the new 160-bed Calaveras County Jail will replace the outdated and overcrowded current facility with a modern and efficient design.

Designed by Dewberry, headquartered in Fairfax, Va., and constructed by Sacramento-headquartered Kitchell CEM, the facility will feature two 48-bed pods, two 24-bed pods and two eight-bed pods for administrative segregation. Each pod, with each size variant dedicated to male or female inmates, will be equipped with a shared dayroom.

“The new Calaveras County Jail is a giant leap forward for the County,” said Dave Kirn, program manager and regional executive at Kitchell. “The new jail replaces a facility that is more than 50 years old and one-sixth the size of the new jail.”

The 76,500-square-foot direct supervision jail is primarily double occupancy and includes observation and holding cells, interview and consultation rooms, a medical exam room, dental room, updated operational support facilities, video visitation space, non-contact visiting space, kitchen and laundry facilities, and a commissary.

The facility will also feature a booking facility equipped with vehicle sallyport, four holding cells, three safety cells, three sobering cells, four court holding cells and a medical screening and exam room.

The $59 million correctional facility was partially funded by a $30.9 million AB 900 grant, which aims to relieve overcrowding in California prisons by sending nonviolent, nonsexual offenders to serve their sentence in county jails, and the county matched an additional $26.4 million for the project via County Measure J. The project also includes the construction of a 41,500-square-foot sheriff’s office building, which will accommodate staff training.

County officials unanimously approved to allow work order directives in mid-April in order to streamline construction. In the same meeting, the county also approved the purchase of $300,000 in furniture for the new jail and sheriff’s administration office as well as approximately $100,000 to install fiber optic cables and copper telephone lines.

The project also made motions for energy efficiency though it did not seek certification from any particular program, Kirn said.

“While LEED certification was not a part of this project, a fairly extensive mechanical and electrical commissioning process will maximize equipment efficiency,” Kirn said. “There is also a domestic water solar heating system to supplement gas-fired water heaters and a separate electrical photovoltaic system on the jail roof.”

The jail is expected to become operational 90 days after occupancy, Kirn said.