Australia’s first high-tech and innovative dormitory-style prison will be unveiled at Wellington, in the state’s west, next week. The 400-bed maximum-security Macquarie Correctional Centre will be the first of Corrective Services NSW’s Rapid-Build Prisons to begin operations opening on Friday, 15 December. The prison is part of the NSW Government’s $3.8 billion prison infrastructure program to address the state’s rising prison population.
Minister for Corrections David Elliott said the centre will operate with around 220 staff, many of whom come from Wellington, Dubbo, Orange, Mudgee and their surrounds.
“The Rapid-Build Prison design was carefully developed by Corrective Services NSW in conjunction with Phillips Smith Conwell Architects. It will revolutionise prison life for a selected group of inmates,” Mr Elliott said. “Placement at this centre will be a privilege for inmates, who will have access to full employment, comprehensive training and targeted incentives.
“The careful restructuring of inmates’ days aids productivity and importantly, increases inmates’ chances of rehabilitation and reintegration back into the community.” The Rapid-Build Prison design has four wings with four dormitory pods housing 25 inmates. Each pod has shower and toilet cubicles. It has some of the highest-level prison security in the state, featuring a central command post, round-the-clock monitoring and Immediate Action Team officers stationed within the centre 24/7.
Member for Dubbo Troy Grant said he looked forward to seeing the new prison up and running. “The construction of Macquarie Correctional Centre has been a real win for the local economy, and I am confident the new facility will continue to build strong ties with the community,” Mr Grant said. The Hunter Correctional Centre Rapid-Build in Cessnock will also open in early 2018.