April 4, 2017
New York City’s plan to close the jail complex on Rikers Island will eventually require a lot of new construction.
“There’s going to be a new life for Rikers Island when it is no longer a jail facility,” said Mayor Bill de Blasio when he announced on March 31 his plan to close the jail complex in 10 years. “We fully intend that Rikers Island would be become a part – important part – of either different kinds of government facilities or private sector enterprises.”
Just two days later, on April 2, the City Council’s independent Commission on Rikers Island released its own report that suggests turning the island over to infrastructure projects like an extra runway for La Guardia Airport and a water treatment plant.
Closing Rikers Island will also involve building smaller new jails. If all goes according to plan, that difficult process of finding sites will begin in five years.
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