In the company of local and state officials, San Mateo County Sheriff Greg Munks took shovel in hand and broke ground on July 10 for the new jail at Maple and Blomquist streets in Redwood City, about a half mile north of the Woodside Road interchange on the eastern side of U.S. 101.
When finished in 2015, the $160 million, 260,000-square-foot facility will house 640 inmates, replace the women's jail and relieve overcrowding at the current downtown jail, officials said.
The new jail will be "a place of hope ... a state of the art correctional facility designed not to just house inmates, but to also prepare them for re-entry into society once they have completed their sentences," the sheriff said in the statement.
Plans include facilities for inmates to learn useful skills, including cooking and dog training, and facilities to allow their minor children to bond with them while they're in jail.
"Statistics indicate children of inmates are five times more likely than children of non-offenders to become incarcerated themselves," Mr. Munks said. "I am committed to breaking the cycle of generational offenders. One way to do that is to provide robust visiting opportunities to the children of both male and female inmates."