Inside INdiana Business

Wells County approves contract for jail renovations

BLUFFTON, Ind. (Inside INdiana Business) — Officials in Wells County say they have awarded an $8 million contract to Massachusetts-based Ameresco Inc. (NYSE: AMRC) to renovate and modernize the county jail. The project includes a facility addition a new sally port and enlarging the intake area.

The project also includes replacing the existing HVAC system, as well as updating lighting and water conservation equipment.

“The jail is now 35 years old and some of the original HVAC equipment is in need of replacement. In addition, the jail operations needs have changed as we now house Level 6 inmates who may require mental health and substance abuse counseling as well as other educational programs,” said Wells County Sheriff Scott Holliday. “We need to adapt to these requirements, make changes to address the Covid-19 pandemic concerns and create a safe working environment for our corrections staff.”

The sheriff says the improvements will enhance occupant and correctional staff safety while also saving the facility $560,000 annually. The county says the renovations will also allow the facility to double its intake area to effectively contain inmates who may have infectious diseases or mental health issues.

The company won the project following a competitive bidding process. Project construction will begin in October 2021 and is expected to reach completion by October of 2022.