Today, Rikers Island has an average of 10,000 inmates per day. The first step of mayor de Blasio’s plan for closing the prison facility is to reduce the population by 56%, building and renovating other smaller facilities in each of the boroughs except Staten Island. Potential sites currently being investigated are: Brooklyn Detention Center, Manhattan Detention Center, Queens Detention Center and NYPD Tow Pound in the Bronx. The city has already commissioned the world-famous Architecture office Perkins Eastman, which has had experience in designing correctional facilities.
The current situation positions Rikers Island as part of Bronx, and by being so, its population is counted by the Census as part of that Borough, instead of being counted as part of the location where they come from. This convention potentially impacts the representation in different neighborhoods of the city, it can lead to misleading conclusions about community size and growth. It could also impact policies and money allocation from city and state government towards these areas.
As it was mentioned, the mayor’s plan intends to redistribute the inmate population into fours boroughs in the city. This move will change, one more time, the counting strategy for inmate individuals. Our group is interested on the different degrees of consequences that this strategy may cause in Bronx and other Boroughs: What is the impact of increasing numbers of inmates in other locations? How is that different from the current situation?
Map - Rikers Redistribution