Cell with a View: Prison coming to redeveloped Philadelphia waterfront

The Philadelphia City Council’s Committee on Public Property voted on May 11 to approve a bill that authorizes the city to purchase a 58-acre parcel of land on the Delaware River for the purposes of building a new prison facility to replace the 140-year-old House of Correction (pictured above), in Northeast Philadelphia.

The bill was introduced late last month, as the Philadelphia Business Journal reported previously. It authorizes the city to spend up to $7,265,299 to purchase the property at 7777 State Road, currently owned by 7777 Philadelphia Loan Associates, LLC. It is assessed at around $7.3 million.

The land is adjacent to the current House of Correction. Michael Resnick, the city’s director of public safety, told PlanPhilly last week that the facility is outdated and “not conducive to mass management” of the roughly 1,500 inmates who are housed there. Purchasing the adjacent tract would allow the city to consolidate operations in the area, update the prison facility, and improve parking issues, Resnick said.

The existing prison will eventually be demolished, said Public Property Commissioner Bridget Collins-Greenwald, in testimony at Monday’s hearing. The development of the new facility will cost anywhere between $300 million and $500 million, Collins-Greenwald said.
[image credit: PlanPhilly.com]

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