MODE as lead designers, in association with the New Zealand Department of Corrections and the Next Step Partners Ltd Consortium, celebrates the practical completion of the Auckland East Maximum-Security Corrections Facility expansion at Paremoremo.
This is New Zealand’s second Public-Private Partnership (PPP) correctional project, following on from the Auckland South Correctional Facility which opened in 2014.
The $300 million (NZD) facility at Paremoremo was envisaged to be a leader in innovative correctional practice by establishing benchmarks of prisoner rehabilitation, reintegration and reduced reoffending. Auckland East will partially replace the existing 50-year old facility, accommodating 260 prisoners with an additional 18-bed At Risk Unit included for management of prisoners at risk of self-harm. With the large number of mentally ill incarcerated men on the rise, the inclusion of such rehabilitation programs and mental health support units in the design, was imperative.
The design of the new facility focuses on providing facilities and an environment supportive of the reduction of re-offending prisoners in the system and was modelled on similar holistic features from prisons in Scandinavia and Germany. Increased cell sizes and private shower facilities, working gardens, and horizontal bars have been included as part of the design.
While the facility is designed for the highest security-rated prisoners in New Zealand, the architecture strives for a balance between meeting security and safety imperatives, while maintaining a therapeutic and dignified living environment.
“New prisons with advanced technology, higher security, combined with an effective and therapeutic design, results in a safer environment for prisoners, staff members and visitors. This particular design also has a focus on community inclusion with several facilities optimised for different kinds of visitors to participate in the rehabilitation of prisoners’ lives.” said Saurin Shah, Associate Director at MODE and lead architect of the project.
MODE has been previously engaged in number of other complex correctional facility upgrades across New Zealand, including the new Auckland South Prison which opened in 2014 and the New Waikeria Men’s Correctional facility on the existing prison precinct, as well as others throughout the Australasian region.