This morning the first bids were taken on the Fred C. Nelles Youth Correctional Institution -- 74 green acres in Whittier that were home to county bad boys until it closed in 2004. The bidding is part of the state's fire sale of "surplus property." A California Department of Corrections report for 2003 gives a flavor of what life was like at the institution toward the end:
Above: Nelles' grounds in search of new tenants -- if you lived here you'd be in jail by now. Below: The Whittier State School for Boys, circa 1905.
400 town homes, 20,000 sf of specialty retail and 20,000 sf of general
it falls into the hands of upscale developers, however, has anyone
given thought to it becoming a low-security facility for drug offenders
or other minimal-risk prisoners who are caught in the middle of the
political debate about California's overcrowded prisons? Final bids are
due November 20.