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Alameda County Jail
5325 Broder Blvd.
Lesley: I GOT TO DO 16 MONTH WITH CREDIT FOR TIME SERVED
JM: Did you spend time in a holding cell after your sentencing? If so, what was that like? If you didn't where did they they take you instead?
Lesley: WELL YES EVERY ONE SPEND TIME IN A JAIL CELL OR HOLDING CELL I MEAN WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE I DONT SEE ONE ITS ALL THE SAME TO ME WHEN IN JAIL
BackgroundThe Alameda County Jail, more commonly known as the Santa Rita Jail, was originally opened in 1947. Built on 1000 acres of land, the old jail replaced and abandoned World War II base known as Camp Schumacher. The conclusion of World War II left an unused Naval Brig that was then converted into a maximun security prison known simply as Greystone. Also converted was a wire-enclosed complex that was used to house the minimum and medium security prisoners as well as a separate dormitory for female inmates. Do to overcrowding and changing demographics it was determined in the mind 1980s that the jail needed to be replaced. Design for the "new" Santa Rita began in 1983 and construction was paid for largely with state bonds which augmented the costs to the local government. Total cost of the updated jail ran to about $172 million and the new facility was opened on September 1, 1989.
Considered to be a "Mega-Jail" the new Santa Rita jail holds over 4,000 inmates divided among it's 18 modern housing units. This makes it the third largest jail in California base on inmate population and the fifth largest in the United States. Santa Rita is also the only facility in California to be accredited by the American Correctional Association. Using a robotic system to deliver food, laundry and other essentials to each area of the 113 acre prison, Santa Rita is considered one of the most technologically advanced facilities of it's kind, in the world. The prison also uses a rooftop solar system that converts sunlight to energy and provides at least half of the necessary power to run the facility during daylight hours. According to a July 2012 article in Rewire, The Alameda County Jail just completed construction on a micro-grid, which combines the solar power, fuel cells and wind turbines to make the jail fully energy independent. Which means if there is a failure at the main grid that supplies power to this area of the county, the jail will still maintain power without skipping a beat.
Life on the Inside
As far as correction facilities go, the Alameda County jail seems to receive positive reviews from it's former tenants. The facilities are clean compared to other jails of this caliber and staff seems to be professional. That being said it is still a jail and it is not without it's fair share of issues. Many claim that the food lacks proper nutrition and the facility always seems to be cold, given that it is made of mostly concrete this would make sense.
One unique aspect of the food provided to this jail is that partnerships through the private sector that help to create a cost-effective delivery system. This cook-chill operation actually provides about 12,000 meals a day at a fraction of the cost you would see from a facility of similar size. This is a nice reduction on tax burdens that would be shared by the citizens of Alameda county. Additionally, the quality on-site medical and mental health services reduces the need for inmates to receive treatment at other facilities in the county, thereby reducing the strain of resources at medical centers utilized by the general public.
Visitations at the Santa Rita jail are by appointment only. Be sure to make your appointment at least 3 days in advance of any visit. Appointments can be maid by calling the visitation hotline (925) 551-6578 during business hours of (8:00 am to 12:00 noon and 1:00 pm to 5:00 pm). Appointements can also be made online on the county sheriff website (www.alamedacountysheriff.org) 24 hours a day. No same day appointments will be granted. Please make sure to bring a valid government issued ID and adhere tot he dress code which requires that that all visitors be fully dressed in non revealing clothing and tattoos should be covered up. Removal of any article of clothing including sweaters of jackets is not permitted and you will be asked to remove jewelry.
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