Comal County Jail
Features & Highlights
- Tella Firma Foundation saved nearly $1 million in construction costs
- New 155,000-square-foot jail with 589 beds
- Multiple features for optimal supervision and inmate well-being
The 155,000-square-foot jail facility can house up to 589 inmates, with a range of custody options including separate, single, double occupancy, quad cells and open dorms. Housing units have natural light, outdoor recreation and on-unit treatment and programs. Supervision features include a second-level control room overlooking housing pods and exercise yards.
For the foundation, Sundt used Tella Firma technology, an innovative design that features steel piers placed closer together with a thinner slab, which uses substantially less concrete in the slab and eliminates the need for concrete piers. It is designed to withstand vertical soil movement with the area’s active clay soils that expand and contract as moisture changes. This unique method saved nearly $1 million in direct and indirect construction costs for Comal County taxpayers.
Additionally, Sundt used modular construction techniques via “steel cell” prefabricated cells for all areas. These prefabricated cells include all beds, light fixtures, plumbing fixtures, and doors and are stacked in place inside the detention pods. Once in-place, MEP contractors merely connect services at the rear chase of the prefabricated unit, significantly reducing the installation time over traditional CMU cells. Other features of the facility include a booking area with temporary holding cells, a detention administration area, magistrate functions, and visitation spaces for attorneys and families. The facility also has a medical and mental-health infirmary with inpatient and mental-health crisis beds, administration space, a commissary, kitchen and laundry support.