UK’s Balfour Beatty to build new US prison

The US arm of UK contractor Balfour Beatty has won a contract to design and build a new $100.5m addition to the Kern County Justice Facility located in Bakersfield, California. 

The work involves building cells and facilities for 822 inmates, and a central plant for heating and cooling.

The 24-plus acre project is part of the County-owned Lerdo Detention Facility (pictured). 

Building the 215,000-square-foot facility is expected to create 350 to 400 jobs for the local community, Balfour Beatty said. The contract stipulates a goal of subcontracting 25% of design and construction services to local businesses.

The design-build team is comprised of Balfour Beatty Construction (general contractor), HOK Architects (project architect), Kitchell (construction manager), and DLR Architects, which created the project’s initial set of conceptual drawings. 

"We look forward to developing a highly interactive client-project team relationship in order to deliver the most innovative, cost- and energy-effective solutions for Kern County and the Sherriff’s department," said Brian Cahill, Southwest Division President of Balfour Beatty Construction.

The project is scheduled to break ground in August 2015 with project completion anticipated by June 2017.

Photograph: The project site is part of the larger Lerdo Detention Facility site (

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