Iredell County Sheriff Darren Campbell said he is hosting several tours of the new detention center.
“I want the taxpayers to be able to see what they paid for,” he said.
The official dedication ceremony will be at 9 a.m. Friday and the detention center will be open to the public for tours from 9:30 a.m. to noon.
However, Campbell said, in order to accomodate people who may not be able to come to a tour on a weekday, Saturday tours are planned.
He said the tours will take place from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday.
Ground was broken on the jail expansion in 2017 after years of planning. The initial cost of the new facility was estimated at $26 million.
Campbell said the expansion allowed the jail to house 500 inmates. The current capacity is 277.
Overcrowding has been an issue at the current facility for years, Campbell said, leading to strife among inmates, and that has resulted in staff members being injured breaking up conflicts.
This facility will alleviate the overcrowding issue, Campbell said, but like the current jail, it is a no-frills building, and that’s something he wants people to see when they tour the building. “There are no TVs, no weight rooms,” he said. “It’s a basic facility.”
Campbell said the additional space will mean a savings in terms of housing inmates in out-of-county facilities and transportation costs from bringing the inmates back and forth for court appearances.
“Those costs have been as high as $100,000 per year,” he said.
The magistrate’s office will also be housed in the new facility.
Anyone interested in any of the tours should come to the main entrance of the new detention center between 9:30 a.m. and noon Friday and 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday.