The Adult Detention Facility (ADF) at 3801 West O Street opened in July of 2013 and has a current maximum capacity of 786 inmates. The ADF was built in response to an overcrowded inmate population in the previous facilities. In 2006, Lancaster County hired a consulting study team to conduct and prepare a pre-architectural jail study.

The purpose of the study was to forecast correctional system needs for Lancaster County, conduct a needs assessment of prior facilities, and make facility and operational recommendations to meet future needs and enhance efficiencies. Recommendations from these assessments and studies were presented to the Board of Commissioners. The Board of Commissioners decided to invest in building a new facility that could answer the issues of safety, security, and inmate overcrowding, as well as accommodate facility expansion, if future inmate population so dictates.

Breaking Ground

Ground breaking for the ADF occurred on July 14, 2009, and construction began shortly thereafter. The ADF encompasses nearly 290,000 square feet. It replaces the Intake and Detention Facility (IDF) located at 605 South 10th Street and the Lancaster Correctional Facility (LCF) located at 4420 NW 41st Street.

Pods & Classifications

The ADF contains 

  • 1 pod for inmates with special needs due to mental/ behavioral health concerns, cognitive deficits, or developmental disabilities
  • 1 segregation pod
  • 6 general population pods
  • 12 general population dormitories

The ADF's classification process determines inmate housing assignment, and evaluates many factors, including present and past criminal charges, level of experience in a correctional environment, and current level of behavioral compliance with facility rules and regulations.

Direct Supervision

The ADF applies the principles of Direct Supervision to facility operations. Direct Supervision has two key elements. The first element involves the physical design of the facility. The ADF is designed to reduce physical barriers that impede staff interaction with inmates. The second element of Direct Supervision involves behavior management methods.

The supervising Correctional Officer assumes control of the housing unit and establishes a professional supervisory relationship with the inmates. Correctional Officers interact with inmates in the housing unit, addressing any problems promptly, and encouraging pro-social behavior. When both elements of Direct Supervision are applied, the result is a correctional facility with improved safety and security for inmates, staff, volunteers, and visitors.