The opening of the new $350 million Phoenix state correctional institution in Montgomery County has been delayed until summer next year, writes Holly Herman for Reading Eagle.
The construction of the new prison complex has been plagued with problems that have already pushed the opening date more than two years later than originally planned.
The previous expected opening date for the prison, that will be replacing SCI Graterford in Skippack Township, was September 29. However, while some of the officers’ buildings have been approved, the state has not yet issued occupancy permits for the cellblocks.
“We are more than two years behind schedule, but we are making sure the project is getting attention,” said Troy A. Thompson, spokesman for the state Department of General Services which is overseeing the construction.
Phoenix is located a mile away from Grateford, on a 1,700-acre parcel in Skippack Township. According to Thompson, the state has held back a $20 million payment for the contractor for failing to complete the work on time.
“We have to hold the contractors responsible,” he said. “Our primary goal is to get a quality facility and for the inmates to move in.”
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