Corrections to build new modular units at two prisons

The growing prison population means Correctons is calling for tenders for additional, modular, prison units. Photo: Getty Images

Correction’s quest for more capacity has ratcheted up another gear.

A tender released on Thursday for three modular prison units is part of the Prison Capacity Programme, expected to add 2150 beds by 2022 to cater for an increasing population behind bars.

Two 126-bed units are to be built at Christchurch’s Rolleston Prison by February next year, with one unit to be constructed at Tongariro Prison by the end of this year.

According to the tender, the work also includes landscaping, utility connection and the construction of staff bases, dining, and recreation areas.

They will be of a rapid, modular design with components able to be built offsite and assembled at the prisons.

Former Corrections Minister Judith Collins suggested using modular prison cells in 2009.

Despite the Prime minister famously describing prisons as a “moral and fiscal failure”, the Government is pushing ahead with $1 billion of spending in the area as the prison population skyrockets.

It has already passed 10,000 – a record – and plans are underway for additional buildings and double-bunking at existing prisons across the country.

A new 1500-capacity prison will be built in Waikeria by 2021.