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Determining Seattle's Municipal Jail Needs

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Seattle is participating in a regional process to possibly site and build a new municipal jail for cities located in north and east King County.
For more information, please visit the North/East Cities Municipal Jail Planning Web site:

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Site Selection
Jail Design Options
Community Input & Outreach
Questions / Comments
Additional Resources

Additional Resources

  • City Of Seattle Comparative Study of the Cost of Low and High-Rise Jails, August 2008
    Seattle hired a consultant who specializes in correctional facilities, Carter Goble Lee, to compare the difference in cost between a 440-bed low-rise jail on a 7-acre site and 440-bed high-rise jail on a 1-acre downtown site. The study found a high-rise facility requires 10.4 more staff; is $906,000 more costly to operate on an annual basis; and (without parking) costs $15 million more to construct. With parking costs considered, the high-rise facility could cost $23.5 million more than a low-rise jail. Factoring in land acquisition cost differences between a low- and high-rise facility adds another $6 million to $25 million in costs to the high-rise option. The two major variables that cause a high-rise development option to be more expensive than a low-rise are parking and land acquisition costs.
  • Report: Issues in Siting Correctional Facilities
    A U.S. Department of Justice study examined seven different jail sites in four states, looking at the effect on property values, crime, quality of life and the local economy. The study found that there weren't any significant differences in crime rates between neighborhoods with jails and comparable neighborhoods without jails (and, in some cases, the crime rates were lower).