The Great Texas Prison Caper

by Rita Robison, Aztec Village, 3000 Aztec Rd. NE6, Albuquerque, NM 87107,

Serial Information: Civil Engineering—ASCE, 1995, Vol. 65, Issue 2, Pg. 67-69

Document Type: Feature article


The Texas Department of Criminal Justice, under court order to relieve prison overcrowding, worked with a team of six construction management firms and a building fabrication/erection company to deliver a total of 10,688 additional beds to the system within six months. They built 32 new dormitories on 25 sites, three food service facilities and a boot camp in a $140 million emergency program that started with design in January 1994 and had prisoners move in in June. The program was marked by unprecedented cooperation among normally competitive firms, and made possible by use of a single design repeated 35 times. Extensive communications technology, including a hub-and-spoke network of e-main, tied all participants together in a virtual organization with instant and constant communication.

Subject Headings: Professional development | Construction management | Team building | Organizations | Fabrication | Emergency management | Court decisions | Texas | United States

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