Construction to begin on additions to Thurston jail
Thursday, August 16, 2012
OLYMPIA — Construction will begin soon on additions to Thurston County's new jail, which is set to be in use by January 2014.
The city of Tumwater recently approved a conditional-use permit for the work at Accountability and Restitution Center. Construction is expected to start this month.
The new jail has sat empty the past two years. It has been controversial; voters repeatedly turned away efforts to have it built.
Registered bidders took an hourlong tour of the facility Wednesday, said project manager Robyn Sederberg.
Bidding is expected to open Aug. 27, and the winning bid will be announced the next day. So far there are five registered general contractors in the running.
The conditional-use permit allows for the construction of a work-release unit, the addition of 40 beds to the already-built jail and a flex.
Construction this summer and fall will be on the work-release unit and the extra beds, a project that engineers estimate will cost between $1.45 million and $1.6 million.
The 7,700-square-foot work-release unit will include 78 beds for men and 18 for women. The unit will be in an existing building on the grounds.
"We will build the work-release unit and the extra beds, then move our corrections operations up there," Sederberg said. "We will build that flex unit when we find the capital and have the operating costs established."
The 21,000-square-foot flex unit would not be built until funding could be raised. It would have 116 beds for women, mentally ill offenders and incoming inmates going through assessment.
"To see that the ARC is actually inhabited will be quite an accomplishment," Sederberg said.