The Government has told of plans to build nine, brand new prisons after the announcement that it would sell off a handful of out-dated, Victorian jails. The old-fashioned estates are set to be used as a site for new housing; something many feel is desperately needed. Approximately 10,000 inmates will be relocated to these newly designed prisons, a move which could save the government 80m.
“Modernising the Prison Estate”
Chancellor George Osborne has claimed “one important step will be to modernise the prison estate” and went on to say that “so many of our jails are relics from Victorian times on prime real estate in our inner cities”.
Osborne has stated that there are plans to completely reform the prison infrastructure system. He believes that this modernisation will rid prisons of the problems associated with drug dealing and will also help inmates into rehabilitation, so that they are no longer a threat to society when they return. He describes the current Victoria cells as ‘old’ and ‘out-dated’ and believes that thousands of new homes will be created from the sales.
A Reading based Grade II-listed building built in 1844 will be the first to be sold after being closed in 2013.
How much Will the development Cost?
It is believed that the new prison project is estimated to cost more than 1bn in public funds. In addition to the nine new prisons mentioned, there are also expansions planned for buildings in Rutland and Warwickshire, as well as a brand new jail being built in the town of Wrexham.
Justice Secretary Michael Gove also welcomed the plans, saying that the ‘investment will mean we can replace ageing and ineffective Victorian prisons with new facilities fit for the modern world’.
Further plans for the sales are being discussed at the moment, whilst four other Government run departments have had to cut their budgets by at least 30% over the next 4 years. According to the BBC, the departments for local Government, transport, environment and the treasury have all agreed new money saving deals.
This new initiative is set to completely reinvent the current prison system, as well as benefiting those looking to move into their first home.
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