SPRINGFIELD – John Baldwin, acting director for the Illinois Department of Corrections, today announced that the F House at Stateville Correctional Center north of Joliet has officially closed. The Illinois Department of Corrections moved its final 36 offenders out of the housing unit on Wednesday, Nov. 30.
“We continue to evaluate ways in which we can improve our operations and protect communities across this state,” Baldwin said. “Shutting down the F-House is part of Gov. Rauner’s plan to reform the state’s broken criminal justice system and improve safety within all IDOC facilities. This is another step in the right direction toward reaching that goal.”
The department began transferring offenders out of the F House on Oct. 26. A total 348 offenders were transferred from the unit to other open beds throughout the department. Closing the unit allows the department to cut down on overtime costs at Stateville by filling nearly 60 vacant posts within the facility. It also allows the department to divert $10.3 million in deferred maintenance costs into other housing units and community-based programs that help reduce recidivism and improve outcomes for offenders.
Specific plans for the unit’s future use have not been solidified but the department recognizes its historical value and fully intends to maintain the structure, Baldwin said.
Stateville’s F House was built in 1922 and was the only remaining “roundhouse” in use in the United States. Its Panopticon layout is antiquated and created safety and operational hazards for both staff and offenders.