Greene County Jail
110,000 square feet
1,286 precast concrete pieces
390 bed jail
and sheriff’s office
HDR ARCHITECTURE, INC.
Greene County Jail
The Greene County Justice Center project had a great need for site space, but a considerable lack of it. The facility needed to house approximately 390 beds for the expansion to the existing jail facility, and it needed to house the entire sheriff’s department, as they had outgrown their existing facilities. All of this had to meet current correctional facility standards, and it had to happen on a tiny site that previously served as parking for the courthouse. It became clear very early on that the optimum solution was to place the jail above the sheriff’s office, but the jail cell loading was immense, presenting a serious framing challenge.
By working closely with our firm during the design stages of the project, a solution for the framing was found. The second level would be built on a superstructure consisting of 50” deep prestressed double tee decks, with additional cast in place topping. These decks would span over a very heavy column and beam system, and would be supported by the exterior walls with an integral “yoke” beam. The lower level was left very open by using the column and beam supports, with the only walls extending into the lower levels being the minimum shearwalls needed, plus the stair and elevator towers. The architect then had the freedom to design the lower office layout in the most effective way. The cell system on the second level was also entirely precast concrete, using flat horizontal walls and transverse spanning decks to enclose the cells. This entire system of cells was built on top of the high-capacity double tee deck, almost as if the cell system was an entirely different structure being constructed inside the shell of the justice center. To facilitate economy the exterior walls not only served as support for the structural framing, they also featured an architectural finish, which included a vertical ribbed pattern at the lower level to accent the structure as well as a variable reveal pattern. The walls were further complicated by casting insulation into the panel in a sandwich fashion. These walls served triple duty and definitely helped the project move forward much more efficiently.
The complexity of the framing was closely paralleled by the complexity of the construction sequence. The small site had to facilitate two cranes and erection crews, and the delivery of precast to each crew. This sequence was carefully mapped out as the construction of the facility was cut into four segments, with each segment interlaced with those adjacent to it. The tight construction schedule along with very difficult framing dictated detailed planning very early in the project to insure that the products we cast could actually be erected.
The Greene County Justice Facility is among the most technically advanced correctional facilities in the nation, acting as an example of how to efficiently build this type of facility. This is due in part to the unique framing and solutions provided by using prestressed concrete products from Prestressed Casting Co. (Click here for more detailed project recap)