City officials provide update on new Lucas County Jail

City officials provide update on new Lucas County Jail

TOLEDO, OH (WTOL) - The current Lucas County Jail is in a state of disrepair, but city officials say they may be close to finalizing a site.

County and city officials both had high hopes for the city's impound lot in north Toledo as the future site of the jail.

Commissioner Pete Gerken says it was too expensive for the county to move forward so the deal came to a halt with the last administration.

Commissioner Gerken says the city still owed $1 million on the lot and wanted the county to pay for a new impound lot, which was upwards of $2 to $3 million.

Commissioner Gerken says it was the perfect location, but the numbers just didn't add up.

He says county officials have been working non-stop for more than two years to find a site that meets the needs of a new county jail, and they are not giving up.

"There are four or five different complexities to this," Commissioner Gerken said. "The tow lot fit all that until the city withdrew that offer and the cost became prohibitive. We are still looking around at some site. I think we are going to be very close to getting one. Hopefully in the next 30 days."

Commissioner Gerken says the recent events at the jail, such as the alleged rape, are a direct result of the poor and outdated condition of the jail.He adds that creating a modern campus that's a single story will keep inmates and jail staff safe.

"The recent incidents at the jail, The young lady unfortunately herself committed suicide in custody. The movement of prisoners. Those are exactly some of the reasons, one of the major reasons why we need a new facility. A six story facility with elevators and hidden stairways," said Gerken.

He did not allude to where the potentially new site is, but says it meets the county's requirements for a new jail, such as having 20 acres, being near a major highway and being properly zoned.

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