Allegan County Jail
Allegan County, Michigan
Adaptive reuse of a manufacturing facility into a jail and law enforcement center
Challenge: Allegan County presented RQAW with the unique challenge of turning a vacant manufacturing facility into a state-of-the-art jail and law enforcement center. Allegan County had been struggling for over 10 years to develop a solution to their detention and space needs when the opportunity to secure the existing Haworth plant for $1,775,000 presented itself.
Solution: The County was able to secure 23.5 acres of land and 189,000-sf of well-maintained manufacturing space for less than $10 per square foot. RQAW conducted an intensive, four-day charette to bring all the stakeholders together. The resulting design concept, which remained unchanged through the design process, employs staff-efficient housing units. RQAW took advantage of the strength of the existing floor slabs, the clear height of the existing structure, and the large structural bay spacing to design housing units made of pre-manufactured steel jail cells. The efficiency of this solution saved the County over $90 per square foot in construction costs when compared to new construction, equating to over $13M in savings to the County on a $1,775,000 investment. The project was completed in 2011, and over 60,000-sf of vacant space exists for future expansion of this facility.