Wayne County Receives Final Proposals For Jail Project

DETROIT (WWJ/AP) – Final proposals are being considered by Wayne County for an unfinished jail project in downtown Detroit.

County Executive Warren Evans’ office says Walsh Construction is proposing two options that include 1,608 beds at a cost of $269 million and 2,200 beds at a cost of $317 million.

“The logic has always been clear to me. It’s not about soccer and it’s not about politics. It’s about a county, with very real fiscal limitations, financing a desperately needed jail which has already cost taxpayers millions,” Evans said, in a statement. “This decision is solely about what’s best for Wayne County.”

Dan Gilbert’s Rock Ventures wants to build a criminal justice center that would include a 2,280-bed jail, courthouse and juvenile detention facility. That project would be on city-owned land north of downtown and cost about $520 million. The county would be responsible for $380 million and the cost of the land. The developer would bulldoze the failed jail, and build a $1 billion commercial development, which would potentially include a Major League Soccer stadium. [View a copy of Gilbert’s proposal].

A recommendation on one of the proposals is expected by late July. [More details].

The unfinished 2,000-bed jail is an eyesore in Detroit — on Gratiot near I-375 across from the county courthouse. Construction stopped in 2013 because the project was wildly over budget, with cost overruns totaling more than $90 million.

© Copyright 2017 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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