Inter-Departmental Correspondence

Sheriff’s Office



October 5, 2010


October 19, 2010







Honorable Board of Supervisors


Sheriff Greg Munks


Preliminary Replacement Jail Site and Pre-architectural Program Report for the Replacement Jail Facility




Authorize the Sheriff, with support of County staff, to proceed with all necessary steps to bring a proposed Replacement Jail Project at the Chemical Way Site to this Board for consideration;


Approve the Chemical Way Pre-architectural Program; and


Adopt a Resolution authorizing and directing the President of the Board to send a letter to the Mayor and City Council of Redwood City advising of the actions taken and indicating the intent of the Board to pursue the Chemical Way site for the replacement jail.


At its June 29, 2010 meeting, the Board of Supervisors requested that the Sheriff provide additional information relating to the Pre-architectural Program Report and additional financial data regarding the construction and operation of the planned Replacement Jail.

Over the last two years, the Sheriff, in conjunction with the County Managers Office, Superior Court and Board of Supervisors, conducted a series of community meetings to allow for public input regarding the need and site for a Replacement Jail (Attachment A). The most recent community meeting was held on Monday, September 20th in Redwood City. The Sheriff’s Jail Planning Unit (JPU) has also been involved with a number of additional community meetings where citizens were given an opportunity to comment on Replacement Jail issues. After careful consideration which included thorough due diligence by the JPU and other Sheriff’s Office personnel, the Sheriff stated the Motorpool and Adjacency site was the preferred location.

The City of Redwood City has recently engaged the County in a series of discussions about siting the Replacement Jail at the Motorpool and Adjacency site on the County campus. As part of that dialogue, Redwood City suggested an alternative site be considered for the replacement jail. This site, known as Chemical Way, is located east of Highway 101 across the street from the Redwood City Police Administration building on Maple Street. Based on preliminary information and documentation provided in the Pre-architectural Program Report, the Sheriff is recommending the County pursue Chemical Way as the preferred site for the Replacement Jail. The Motorpool site remains a viable alternative if for whatever reason the Chemical Way site becomes unfeasible.

In January 2009, Liebert and Associates was retained to assist the County with developing a Pre-architectural Program. This Pre-architectural Program (Attachment B) was specific to the Motorpool and Adjacency site on the County Government campus. It was developed through a series of meetings with representatives from the Sheriff’s Office as well as other County departments, stakeholders and community based organizations. For development of this Pre-architectural Program, earlier reports written by DMJM Design/AECOM determining both current and future needs were reviewed. Since then, an additional Pre-architectural Program has been written by the same consulting team and is specific to Chemical Way in Redwood City (Attachment C). The potential to reduce jail population through additional alternative programs were analyzed in both reports. The recommended scenario for planning is to build to the baseline need, project future growth and concurrently implement jail population management strategies. The Sheriff is recommending approval of the Pre-architectural Program for the Chemical Way site.



Recent events have resulted in a recommendation that the Replacement Jail be built on Chemical Way. The City of Redwood City approached the County with the Chemical Way site four months ago and since has made significant progress in evaluating the viability of the site.

Redwood City hired an outside consulting firm to facilitate the acquisition of the Chemical Way site with the ultimate goal of the property being transferred to the County. Additionally, the City agreed to pay 50% of the costs related to extending the contract the County has with Liebert and Associates. Phase 1 environmental reports have been completed and phase 2 is underway. The Jail Planning Unit has coordinated weekly meetings with Redwood City’s consultant and has met twice with the Regional Water Quality Control Board to explore the potential environmental mitigation for the Chemical Way site.

The possibility of shared services on the Chemical Way site has also been proffered by Redwood City. Specifically, the City is proposing to buy back 1.3 acres of the Chemical Way site and construct a two story parking garage. The City would compensate the County for the 1.3 acres and pay for the cost of construction. Subsequently, the city will lease about 165 parking stalls to the County for use by the Sheriff’s Office in conjunction with the operation of the Replacement Jail. Final arrangements between the City and County would be memorialized in a memorandum of understanding that would be approved by this Board A letter of intent from the County to the City to that effect would serve as an incentive for the City to continue its efforts in connection with facilitating the acquisition and development of the Chemical Way site,

One of the critical decision points relating to the environmental review of the Chemical Way site is compliance with applicable California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) requirements. TRA Environmental Sciences has been retained to evaluate the need for a full Environmental Impact Report (EIR) or alternatively the preparation of a negative declaration. An initial study will analyze the direct environmental impacts associated with demolition of existing buildings at Chemical Way and the construction and operation of a new jail facility on the site. The initial study would also analyze the indirect environmental impacts associated with the redevelopment of the existing Women’s Correctional Center (WCC) with a new use and cumulative impacts of the proposed project in association with other reasonably foreseeable development in the project vicinity.

The Chemical Way site offers some significant advantages over the previously identified Motorpool site. In total, the site is almost five acres in size, nearly double the available land at the Motorpool site. This allows for a lower rise building that can be constructed more economically and allows a more efficient and functional site plan. Ingress and egress points at the Chemical Way site are potentially better and the site allows for a video visitation area, relieving the Maguire Correctional Facility (MCF) of the visitation function. Most visitations could occur via video feed from the Chemical Way site.

A replacement jail on the Motorpool site would require two separate areas to handle the processing/court holding and transport holding functions. One area would be located on the ground floor and the other on the fourth floor.

Alternatively, a replacement jail on Chemical Way would require only one area to handle the processing/court holding and transport holding functions. This secure area is located on the ground floor. Inmates being moved between MCF and the Chemical Way jail would be transported in vans.

The Alternative Sentencing Bureau (ASB) and Transitional Housing, whether located at the Motorpool or Chemical Way site, will be the same square footage and functions will remain the same. The space within these areas may be configured a little different depending on how the buildings are stacked.

At the Motorpool site, every function will be contained in one high rise building. The height of the building would be 111 feet. On the Chemical Way site, there is room for two separate buildings connected by one secure and one non secure corridor. One building will contain three housing units (each housing floor with a mezzanine), and mechanical penthouse for a total height of 72 feet.

Another milestone in the site selection process occurred when the County contracted with HOK Architects to conduct a thorough master plan study of the County Government Center relating to how a new jail would fit on the campus and what costs might be incurred if the Motorpool site was ultimately chosen for the Replacement Jail. The HOK preliminary report indicated the cost to construct a replacement jail at the Motorpool site had expanded to over $218 million dollars. Previous cost estimates for the jail ranged from $130-$160 million.

The cost increases include line items such as a new parking structure, seismic upgrades to County Office Building 1 (455 County Center), temporary re-location of nearly 400 County employees during upgrades, a new Motorpool, the possible construction of a new County office building (COB 3) and the replacement of the County’s Data Center. None of these extra costs will be needed should the Chemical Way site be chosen. The construction costs at Chemical Way will be approximately $22 million dollars less than the estimate at the Motorpool site. (see Attachment D)

The Chemical Way Pre-architectural Program modifies the previous study published in June 2010 that was site specific to the Motorpool site. Due to the relocation to a larger site and the inability to connect the Replacement Jail to the HOJ, some functional areas needed to be revised and in some cases expanded. The processing/transport area and the medical/mental health clinic had to be expanded. The relationships of several spaces also needed to be rearranged. The total square footage increase of the building on the Chemical Way site is 2,373 gross square feet.

The Chemical Way Pre-architectural Program details secure housing units for males and females and corresponding program areas located either centrally or on the housing clusters. 680 secure beds are planned, plus 88 non-secure Transitional/Work Furlough beds for a total of 768 beds. The program also includes other functional areas that will be needed in the new jail including Processing/Transport Area, Medical/Mental Health Clinic, Public Lobby/Video Visitation, Facility Administration, Staff Support, Master Control, Support Services and Food Service.

The proposed facility will consist of a housing tower with 3 floors and attached non-secure ancillary structures. Staff support, public area, video visitation and administration will be in ancillary structures adjacent to the housing tower. The transitional housing custody area will be located there as well with a separate entrance. This area will provide 88 male and female inmates opportunities to participate in programs such as Transitioning Animals into Loving Situations (TAILS), culinary cooking classes, family reunification, vocational training, re-entry, and mentorship assignment.

Regarding the Replacement Jail kitchen, the consulting firm Marshall Associates, Inc. was retained to provide an evaluation of the existing MCF kitchen. The kitchen was built in 1988 and expanded and remodeled in 1994. It was designed to serve 680 inmates but now serves approximately 1200 meals, 3 times a day, 7 days a week. Approximately 3,600 total meals are served on a daily basis and 1.3 million annually.

According to the Marshall report, the MCF kitchen equipment will need to be replaced within five years, requiring partial closure during the remodeling phase. It is recommended that one central kitchen be built in the replacement jail to serve both the MCF and the replacement jail. The proposed kitchen would be designed to include a culinary vocational training school for inmates as part of the re-entry program.

The replacement jail includes 257,112 gross square feet and 156,272 net square feet, representing 335 square foot per inmate, complying with California Standards Authority (CSA) minimum space requirements.

The number of staff necessary to operate a jail is dependent on the final design and should be revisited throughout the design process. The staffing recommendation is based on all housing units being occupied utilizing a combination of sworn and civilian positions. A total of 155 positions will be required to operate the replacement jail if all three housing floors are occupied. The cost of these positions is approximately $35 million a year. Of the 155 positions needed, 63 positions already exist in the Sheriff’s Office based on the closing of Women’s Correctional Center, Men’s Minimum Security Transitional Facility, Women’s Transitional Facility and by reducing overcrowding at the MCF. Also, the Transitions/Jail Planning functions constitute another 12 positions that will be folded into the replacement jail staffing compliment.

A phasing option for consideration would be to “shell” or partially complete one floor, leaving it temporarily vacant and not staffed. By partially completing one housing floor, the inmate bed count would drop from 768 to 576. The number of staff necessary to staff this phasing alternative is 129 at a cost of about $29 million, $6 million less than the full facility occupancy option.

Transportation costs will not change regardless of where the Replacement Jail is built or which option on the Chemical Way site is chosen. Currently, the Sheriff’s Transportation Bureau makes an average of three round trips per day from the Maple Street Correctional Facilities to the Hall of Justice/MCF area. It is anticipated that two additional trips per day will be necessary if the Chemical Way site is chosen. No additional transportation staffing will be needed based on those projections.

Approval of this Pre-architectural Program contributes to the Shared Vision 2025 outcome of a Collaborative Community by ensuring a safe and cost effective Replacement Jail Facility.




FY 2009-10

FY 2010-11

Number of jail beds saved using custody alternative programs



Maguire Correctional Facility - Average Daily Population (ADP)





Staff costs are in FY 2010-11 dollars. Approximately $35 million for 155 sworn and civilian positions would be needed to operate the Replacement Jail. Of the 155 positions, 63 already exist and 12 will be folded into the replacement jail from Transitions/Jail Planning, offsetting the $35 million by an estimated $17.5 million, for an additional Net County Cost increase of $17.5 million. The phased option on the Chemical Way site will result in a Net County Cost increase of $11.5 million. In addition to Sheriff’s Office staffing, the Replacement Jail will require services from other County departments, including Correctional Health, ISD and DPW. Attachment E details those charges.


ATTACHMENT A - JPU Outreach Meeting Chart

ATTACHMENT B - Pre-Architectural Program Report Motorpool Site

ATTACHMENT C - Pre-Architectural Program Report Chemical Way Site


ATTACHMENT E - Operational Impacts Chart