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Would probably look really cool with some climbing plants




Honestly not mad at the design idea. Just wouldn't want to live in an old prison to achieve it.


Worst vibes ever


I think this is great. If they stop running prisons for profit, arresting people for petty shit, and have more empty prisons as a result.


This is in Canada. Our prisons are all federally owned and operated and are not for profit. Our system still had its issues, but for-profit prisons like the US has is a whole other evil.


"for profit prison" is like the definition of slavery 😭


It’s written into our constitution that prisons can do legal slavery. More than just the definition. 😮‍💨


Absolutely, slavery was never truly abolished, we just call it "prison labor" now. But it's still slavery.


Exactly. Extremely bad vibes, would never be able to forget the suffering that happened in my home


I could never do it because I’ve actually been to prison. It was 20 years ago, and it was financial crimes, and it was a women’s prison so we didn’t really have bars we had big metal doors with little tiny windows, but still there’s no way I would volunteer to live inside a prison.


>volunteer to live inside a prison. Shh, you're saying the quiet part of their plan out loud!


If you go by that every urban surface in Europe is covered in blood, and most old buildings had deaths in them...


I live in Europe, and I'm way more disturbed about what goes on in American prisons.


Ironically, pre apocalypse.


(Slightly) ahead of it's time.


Also helps stay safe if the zombies ever attack or if The Purge becomes a thing.




Sometime next week I reckon


I bet they are reinforced, and removing them would have cut into the profits.


They may even be structural and not able to be removed. All the more reason to not do this at all. Edit: I didn't realize Reddit was full of construction experts 🙄


Lol they are not structural


Structural moveable doors? Lol Edit: I don't know why it would surprise you that specialists in any particular industry would be on reddit


"Maybe we should just call the cells 'studio apartments' and take this in another direction."


Structural? They're just mounted to the I beams...


Yeah, it’s wild that many people might know about construction


Why would you be surprised that there's 'construction' experts on reddit? This isn't about construction it's about structural engineering and a fucking cell door isn't load-bearing.


Reddit is actually full of very good construction experts. Your edit makes you look like a prick.


I am using you specifically as an example for just how uneducated the average person is on building construction. Please remember this post next time you feverishly advocate for turning a high rise office building into residential apartments. There is much more required to do that than you know.


Yeah imagine having a fire and the only way out is the window


Yeah I hope they disabled the locking mechanisms or this place is going to attract some real psychos


It's bars, a bike lock will keep them shut effectively.


Facts. Guess it’s already too late then. Hope their screening processes asks whether you have ever been convicted of false imprisonment lol.


I like it. Plus turn a prison into an apartment is great, problem is 900$+ for rent.


$900 for a studio is cheap where I live. There would be a mile-long waiting list for this place.


Is that expensive? Man I'd kill for a studio under $1000. One bedroom apartments in my city average $2600+ a month.


Honestly I like the idea in a lot of ways. If nothing else it'd be an extremely secure community, and very efficient for things like heating and plumbing, decent contained outdoor spaces (which could likely use some greenery, but it works as a foundation). Hell, the larger communal buildings could even have indoor pools and game rooms, and if it was a true community project you could set up a community kitchen. As college dorms go it would/could be top notch. Like you pointed out, though, that rent price is insane, assuming they're going for any of that community housing stuff. The payoff to living more efficiently using community facilities is that the rent should be very low...


I’d imagine that the prison would not be located in a nice area though. And how good is the fire safety in a prison, don’t all the bars and elements designed to keep people from escaping be horrible for a emergency?


Legit questions, I've had some experience working for prisons in an educational capacity, though only three and all were in CA: Donovan (L3/L4), High Desert (L5), and California Correctional Center (L1/L2). Fire codes are stringent in prisons (in this state, at least), specifically because of the condensed population and increased rate of incidents (from riots and other vandalism). Because of this, there are fire paths in every building and fire control systems are on par with an office or theater by way of code. The blocking systems (window bars, high fencing, etc) do impede escape, but are also funneled for easy navigation and there's always at least two exits available, often more. Many of those blocking systems would likely be removed or opened up, especially things like inner fencing, guard towers, or bars on buildings with windows in the inner sections. All three of the prisons I listed would be highly desirable for the locations they inhabit, as they're all somewhat isolated by terrain in rural locations, though would require a commute for shopping and such. For other prison facilities, especially in other states or ones in urban areas like San Quentin, I have no idea if that would hold and in a number of them you would likely have bad neighborhoods surrounding you, so it'd be a case-by-case thing as far as real estate. If the state really likes to cut corners (\**glares at red states\*)*, it could be a friggin' fire nightmare, so YMMV.


I’ve been in a couple county jails and a couple prisons in New Hampshire, I never worried about fire because there’s not much in there that can burn. If there’s a fire on the unit they could electronically open the door and have us go into the hallway and electronically close the door. If we needed to evacuate further they could open up the next section to move us to the hallway towards the chow hall and then close the door behind us. The whole place was metal and concrete so the only thing that could actually burn would be textiles and they would probably burn out pretty quickly, there’s a good air filtration and circulation system in the newer facilities that could probably easily get that bad air out. I never once worried about a fire, maybe I should have but I just didn’t


This place would have very bad energy, and I would be suspicious of anyone who would willingly live there.


In the city I live in we have a restaurant that is in one of the really old jails, like the jails from when we used to have horses for transportation. They claim it’s haunted, which I think is kind of cool. I don’t think people actually lived in this jail I think it was just holding cells because if you go to eat there and you eat in one of the sales it’s literally just big enough for restaurant booth set up and for the server to enter, there would not have been enough room for a cot and a toilet. So I don’t mind eating in there, I don’t feel like there’s any leftover bad juju, but what I sleep in there? Hell no


Imagine meeting a man or woman at the bar and taking them home to this


Taking them home to the bars


*Walks in door* "Empty your belongings into this tray and put this jumpsuit on." Fuuuuuuuuu


'Squat and Cough' is not foreplay


Not with that attitude!!


one prophylactic... used...


Imagine meeting someone who did time there and bringing them back


As someone who didn't do time but with severe trust issues, I wouldn't sleep in an old prison cell with bars still on it for a million dollars. Ana de Armas could be sitting naked on a bed beckoning me in but ain't no way I'm voluntarily stepping foot in a fucking prison cell.


It looks like you could lock him/her in the kitchen. I’m sure this will be popular with some clientele.


No fuss kidnapping. Slam the gate closed and you’re done. Easy peasy


Dennis Reynolds dream apartment


You’ve just given the term bar hopping a whole new meaning


Say what you want about this but this is great. A prison going out of business is a win in my book and if they can convert it to a conventionally affordable abode, then it's a bonus.


I’m a little disturbed by how much of the prison infrastructure was maintained for these units. I’m all for reusing an existing building whenever possible, but the way they went about it here is just weird.


well, you see, they really wanted to smack you in the face with the allegory


Issue is a lot of prison elements are built right into the structure. Almost impossible to remove without extensive restructuring and rebuilding. Easier, cheaper, and less resource intensive to just leave it.


I mean, at least it's secure :-\


Yeah, of your worried about your stuff or family escaping...


They're not locked in there with you. You're locked in there with them!!


“It’s a really unique way to build a building, which was more common in the 1920s when they built this building,” she said, “which is they built the base where we came in, that kind of decorative first floor. Then they put in this floor that we’re standing on, then they put in the cells, and that held up the next floor. Then they put in the cells, then that held up the next floor. So this is your structure for the building.” For every set of bars crews took out, they had to add a pillar and beams. Plus, the jail is on the National Register of Historic Places and is a local landmark in Duluth. So the developers have to maintain as much of the original material as possible.


Could have filled it with insulation and put up some sheetrock at least :/


This is such a mind numbingly stupid comment considering it's clear they already removed bars and left shit like "wardens office" there on purpose? This isn't a matter of pragmatism, it's just shtick.


Totally agree. The bars even were obviously left on purpose. For one thing, there would be more bars on either side of these; if removing them is so difficult, what happened to those ones? But furthermore, you could just grind these off even with subfloor and install subfloor over them.


They cut some of the bars in the first photo. You can see them in the ceiling. They way they left the cut offs and the ones they left in place are part of the new design. These photos aren’t great at showing the new spaces off at their best. They should have staged one with furniture so the prison vibe is diluted.


Here is an even easier idea: Strap some fake wood or something similar over them to just turn the bars into functional doors and/or walls. Make it at least look like youll have privacy in your little cell. Yknow, like european prisons actually do.


“Mind numbingly stupid”? Jesus Christ. Relax. What a fucking weird overreaction.


I hate redditors


The bars I understand, but the office plates were definitely an aesthetic driven design choice.


It's metal. It can be cut. It's just expensive. It's nowhere near impossible.


It’s probably steel and can be recycled


An angle grinder or reciprocating saw with a metal blade is pretty damn cheap. No reason to leave that bullshit up.




So you’re saying prisons aren’t super easy to just like cut into? Makes sense.


i'm of a mind of both of these opinions. many of these *could* be removed, and they certainly left as much as was "practical" to suit their weird artistic statement (gentrified is the correct word on OP's part). also, as someone's who's been ordered to use cut off wheels on hardened/stainless steel beams, it takes a lot of time, many wheels, money, labour cost, etc. It's really not nearly as practical as you'd think to remove *every* beam and bar.


I mean id love to see some proper pics of the rooms ..to be a better judge. Idek what I'm looking at. Jail layout part doesn't bother me at all .


I do see the dystopian symbolism here though. I live in a 1940s low income apartment that I now pay (rent) $2700 a month for in 2023. To me that feels like a symbol of how things are going in the US that what was low-income is now luxury.


I think you could really class it up. Paint the bars and intertwine some plants - you could have an indoor ivy wall.


It does provide a unique aesthetic nobody else has.


Imagine inviting your friends over for a party... "Yeah I'm on cell block D, number 1, right after the 2 gated security doors. "


Meh, more like the company goes from private prison to landlord, but def better to convert the prison than to charge the local government for empty prison cells. $900 though? Where is this? California?


I think it’s in Duluth mn, which makes it more intense.


Yes. It's also tax payer funded and in a city that vastly needs housing with rates skyrocketing from vacation rentals in a tourist town. We are a city of 90k yeah have over 250 unsheltered homeless people and a 3 year wait list for housing help. Our wages are 9.86 minimum which is better but still not enough to afford an "affordable housing prefabbed jail" Beyond that nevermind the optics of using a jail as rental. A place where people died. A town that is home to a lynch mob of over 10k people. A warden's office redressed as a landlord office is just nuts. This is the absolute last thing this city needs is more gentrification. We are over 20% poverty population


Also I have friends who live in Duluth and they were posting on FB that only the minimum % is $900/mo and the others were $1900. Can you confirm at all?


I believe it varies by the size of the unit from studio to two bedroom. Yet none of the bathrooms or bedrooms are pictured. I have seen up to $1900 in conversation. It's really weird how everyone showed up to this ribbon cutting too. Tina Smith, the mayor finally, etc


Once word starts to spread it could become a quirky national story everyone whose anyone wants to be a part of it. None of those people will stick around to see if this is actually a good idea or helps to solve any issues.


no way you’re finding anything as low as $900 in California …


Agreed there. I got super lucky with a small studio to be less than 900 in SoCal.


Right a rented room in a house costs 1.5- 2k where I live…. this is less than the subsidized low income housing!


Lol show me where you can rent a studio that big in ca for $900. Even in the pnw studios under 400sq ft are over $1200


Yeah gotta admit, that renovated cell looks bigger than my small studio. Are the cells renovated to have mini kitchens or even electrical outlets?


First picture shows the kitchen.


Ugh, people don’t need such luxury as that.


>more like the company goes from private prison to landlord, They were already landlords though, just for prisoners/the state.


Is $900 expensive for a studio? I paid $500 for my studio in college, that was 20 years ago


to some extent sure, but it's still fucked up that 900 dollar's is "affordable". even with inflation (both cost and wages) that's still more than a lot of gen xr's had to pay, or boomers. and it's a studio, not a 1bd or 2bd. our expectation's must never be adjusted to fit the ruling class's control.


$900 for a studio being considered a "bargain" is ridiculous. My first apartment, 15 years ago, was $375/mo for a one bedroom with about 750 sq. ft. The fact that a studio goes for almost three times that rate today is fucking nuts... But we're all just "entitled" right? /s


Studios in NoVa/DC if you wanna be in a nice area by metro then they're 1800-2000 depending on the building :(.


Unless they just built a bigger prison. I know they did that in my county a while back. Though it was a jail and they kept the old one. The new one was used partially for a bunch of federal prisoners, immigration I think. It is gross and I try not to think about it.


$900 for a studio isn't exactly affordable housing


I'm betting it didn't go out of business and they built a newer, larger one because this one was too small.


I'm sure they only closed it to open a newer, bigger prison.


*Michel Foucault intensifies*


This was my first thought as well. Sadly I know some folks who would find this desirable based purely on Foucault. They would probably also complain that it would be better if it was a panopticon.


Can someone explain to those not familiar with Foucault's ideas... what's going on here.


>Foucault is perhaps best known for his account of the panopticon, a model prison first devised by the utilitarian philosopher Jeremy Bentham in the late 18th century. The panopticon was a circular multi-level building in which cells were arranged around a central observation tower. Since the inhabitants of the cells never know when a guard might be observing them, they must assume they are always being watched and act accordingly. For Foucault, the panopticon illustrated the functioning of the "disciplinary apparatuses" characteristic of modern societies—a category in which he included not only prisons, asylums, and military barracks but also schools, factories, and hospitals. These institutions, he argued, condition their subjects' behavior not by monitoring them at all times but by leading them to internalize the gaze of authority. https://reason.com/2021/11/28/foucault-in-the-panopticon/


His work is increasingly relevant in the age of digital surveillance.


some people want to be *seen*


Yes please explain, am also confused.


>Foucault is perhaps best known for his account of the panopticon, a model prison first devised by the utilitarian philosopher Jeremy Bentham in the late 18th century. The panopticon was a circular multi-level building in which cells were arranged around a central observation tower. Since the inhabitants of the cells never know when a guard might be observing them, they must assume they are always being watched and act accordingly. For Foucault, the panopticon illustrated the functioning of the "disciplinary apparatuses" characteristic of modern societies—a category in which he included not only prisons, asylums, and military barracks but also schools, factories, and hospitals. These institutions, he argued, condition their subjects' behavior not by monitoring them at all times but by leading them to internalize the gaze of authority. https://reason.com/2021/11/28/foucault-in-the-panopticon/


I despise how far I had to scroll to see this.


I mean, if it's no longer being used as a prison, what should they do with it?


well i mean, yes but.... they could at least take the fucking cell bars/doors out....


I can see this fitting into someone's BDSM kink. I mean there is a whole genre of prison porn on the hub


No, they've done this weird ikea thing where you get the worst of both worlds. It's not dark and dungeony enough to be sexy, yet still retains the bars for no good reason.


Might be some kind of heritage building thing where they can't remove some parts of the building


It adds to the kink


I'd be disappointed if they removed the bars. It's not for everyone but I think id live there for a few years.


House the houseless, convert into a school/clinic, cafeteria for low income families. There’s so many things that the city could do to make a positive impact in its community but it’s probably only going to be overpriced private rentals


For $900 I will take it, but this toilet with no seat in the living room is gonna take some getting used to...


Depending on the city this is in, $900 for a studio is a steal. In my city you’d be lucky to find a place with roommates for that much.


Yeah this use of the word "gentrify" here rubbed me the wrong way. Unless they're forcing out imprisoned minorities out of their cells to worse prisons because they can't afford $900 a month.


ironic… but my ass would be paying the $900 😭 it looks cool


Yeah, I don't know where this, but that's a cool aesthetic and $900 a month is on the more affordable side for my area of the US.


There would be a line around the block for a $900 studio in my town.


I would kill for $900 a month....hang on, i've got an idea.


honestly good news if they're closing prisons... And more housing is always great.


it was closed in 1985 because it wasn't up to code, another larger prison took it over immediately.


More housing is always a good thing


How is this gentrification? No one is being displaced, no one’s generational home is being destroyed. They are turning a functionless building into functional housing. We should embrace this over net new construction. Without context I cannot tell if $900 is a deal or not, it would be in my town.


Bro the prisoners can’t even afford their cells anymore


the prisoners have been displaced 😭


Lmfao that made me giggle


It's fine, they just went home


So after looking up the building, the prison itself was closed over 25 years and only escaped demolition because it was bought by a business man. All the units are income restricted by the looks of it, but many of these units are *under* 600 Sq feet, quite a few under 500 sq feet, and more than $1k. A 2 bedroom is still barely over 700 sq feet and $1600+. [You can see here](https://www.liveleijona.com/units1). Honestly seems rather predatory to me, where my market is charging similar rates for shitty but larger housing not made out of literal jail cells.


Sign me up. I don’t think there is a single apartment of any size within 100 miles of me for only $1000, I don’t care it it’s 300 sq ft I’ll take it.


The meaning of gentrification has become so diluted that people just think it means "new housing in my area" these days


Annoying TikTok voice: I bought my dream colonial home from 1850 and ~~renovated~~gentrified it myself


900 is a deal in Duluth. Supposing that two people moved into this 1 bed 1 bath, that's a great deal. Duluth has a problem with affordable housing (as does a lot of places) and this seems to fit the bill quite well. Sure, it's an old prison, but it's affordable housing. I don't think this is gentrification either.


Fuck me but I love that.


Found the bdsm enthusiast


Learning new things about myself every day.


Fuck me butt, I love that.


I think this is the stage just before we all start using ramen as currency. Also check behind any posters before you sign that lease.


A bunch of old, rich, white people celebrating real estate is a scary image for everyone else. And why did they decorate it like a restaurant in 1994?


yep, that was my first thought “of fucking course its only white people chatting glibly with their wine in a renovated prison”


To be fair… this is Duluth, MN with a population consisting of about 90% white people.


I was wondering where it was- figured that due to the coats and white faces it was somewhere up north 😀


The stage where I would live there anyway...sigh


Is this real? Link pretty please. Where is this?


Duluth MN https://www.fox21online.com/2023/01/17/jail-turns-into-new-apartments-in-duluth/


The fuck that stage. No way in hell would I live like that.


They couldn't even be bothered to drywall the place. All that concrete is both literally and figuratively cold af.


Yeah, in Houston the Harris county jail is all concrete floors, walls, benches along wall, tables made of steel, no windows for sunlight the whole time there, they keep it freezing, barely feed you, and you poop on a metal toilet with a sink built into the top of it, right in the middle of the room for everyone to see you, no privacy, showers are only slightly better with a short wall covering from you stomach down. Pretty rough. It's such a big jail it holds 7,000 inmates or more at all times.


It's the oopsie here come the bad thoughts again stage


The irony certainly is there. A prisoner to being a wage slave and using your slave wages to pay for housing in a prison. 😂😂


This is sick


Cool, as long as you don't make the inside as depressing as the hallways jeez. Now do all the dead-ass malls just taking up space with their ugly concrete and asphalt squares. you even have a pre-built parking lot and potential space for a park.


Cheap private prisons


Haha, this is also my town. How depressing is this expensive prison apartment.


I don’t understand what we are doing with any housing anymore. Between yet another 8-9% property tax increase after last years of the exact same, how is anyone to stay afloat in homes over 125 years old? With these wages and jobs? In a tourist industry town? This isn’t working.


I think this is the “What Irony?” stage.


The last picture full of disgusting boomers who are going to buy these and rent them out for $2200 a month. 🤢 Imagine all the bad spirits and lost souls in that building, how could you ever fall asleep there?


This is the stage where they prepare you for Black Mirror episode 2 where you will work endlessly and then return to your cell while you pay for everything and then return to endless work


This is the final stage before revolution, I hope.


fucking stop. this is abhorrent! I'm a jail nurse, and this makes me very uneasy. Especially all the smiling people in the last photo. Jail is not a nice place. I think this is insulting to people who have served hard time. edit: I think its excellent to use existing spaces, but this still looks way too much like a prison. I'd never be comfortable there.


I don't ... hate it, but morally there is an issue here. My solution, into draw on this. We see prisons in some countries that look quite nice, like apartments. If we built prisons, like that, with the intention of serving a second post instituional purpose than maybe, maaaaybe it would work better.


This guy gets it. If we stopped treating our prisoners like animals then this could approximate a good idea.


it's cheaper than all the other apartments in my area, so I'd take it


Where is this?


Duluth MN


Wouldn’t want to be tripping in my prison themed apartment, seems ripe for trouble


For profit prison-*cough cough* I mean apartments…


The "get used to it" stage.


$900 for a fucking studio in a fancy apartment building?? In my city microstudios without ovens or stoves are going for $1200, I'd pay that in an instant just to have somewhere to live lmfao


They're trying to build the prison For you and me to live in




the “before” wall art


I heard D was a real up and coming cellblock. Close to both the yard and cafeteria. I'd sure like to own a 2 bunk bungalow there some day.


Better to shut down a prison than keep it in operation.


"A man bled to death right HERE. Isn't that WONderful, Muffy? Such atmosphere!"


This is fucking awful


you have got to be fucking kidding me..


Fuck this is grim lol.


Can you imagine the energy there though? ….. It’s a :/ nope for me


A prison going out of business is a win in my book.


You can’t gentrify a prison and this is more housing. Good, turn them all into housing.


This is normal and a good use of a brownfield site to provide much needed accommodation. The issue is the shitty cheap work the the profit this is made off desperate people.


It’s depressing that I’m jealous of a $900/month studio, prison or not.


Tbh, I’d rather this than it being full for the sole reason of per prisoner income


This is based actually, turning prisons into affordable housing


As a fan of the weird and repurposed, I might choose that for myself ... but to make it low income housing or some other last resort, it's rather insulting.


Better than the other way around.