Okanagan Correctional Centre

Architect: DGBK Architects

Location: Oliver, British Columbia, Canada

Awarded a citation

Completed under a public-private partnership agreement, this facility creates a therapeutic environment for residents and embodies numerous progressive approaches to correctional facility design.


The Okanagan Correctional Centre was designed on the premise that the physical environment plays a profound role in encouraging personal and societal change, moderating behaviors and promoting wellness. Its mandate is to make a difference in the lives of those that it serves, in many significant ways. This facility is the continuation of British Columbia Corrections' mandate to re-develop their facilities. Their objective, which began 20 years ago, was to create a new model for the delivery of corrections services, providing a safer, more supportive environment to achieve better outcomes.

Completed in the fall of 2016 under a public-private partnership agreement, the Okanagan Correctional Centre embodies some of the most progressive approaches to correctional facility design. It is more sustainable, less costly to build and maintain, more operationally efficient, and has lower staffing requirements. More importantly, it creates a therapeutic environment for residents, encouraging them to develop the attitudes necessary for reintegration into society. This is achieved by creating a safe, respectful, and dignified environment for all occupants, and by encouraging closer, more collegial relations between residents and staff.

It is a multi-level building, accommodating a wide range of populations: sentenced and remand, male and female, open custody to maximum security with a range of criminal histories, conditions and incompatibilities. At 861 beds and a construction cost of $102.7 million, it is the largest facility in the province and the most technologically advanced. It is also one of the most environmentally responsible corrections facilities in North America, designed to merge into its setting and serve as a catalyst for business development within the community.

Jury Comments

This is a very powerful and clear exterior design with simple materials. The strong interior spaces throughout the facility create a sense of continuity. An excellent example of a public-private partnership project.

Additional information

Acoustic Consultant: BAP Acoustics

Building Envelope Consultant: Morrison Hershfield

Civil Consultant: MMM Group

Commissioning Agent: Inland Technical

Corrections Advisor: Jug Island Consulting

Design Builder: PCL Constructors Westcoast

Electrical Consultant: MMM Group

Energy Modeler: Morrison Hershfield

Fire Protection Consultant: The Gisbourne Group

Fire Code & Life Safety Consultant: GHL Consultants

Food Services Consultant: Lisa Bell & Associates

Financial Proponent: Plenary Justice

Geotechnical Consultant: GeoPacific Consultants

Interior Designer: DGBK Architects

Landscape Consultant: Connect Landscape Architecture

Mechanical Consultant: MMM Group

Risk Advisor: Keeo-Row Consulting

Service Provider: Honeywell Canada

Structural Consultant: Bush, Bohlman & Partners


2017 Justice Facilities Review Jury

Michael E. LeBoeuf, FAIA (Chair), Little, Orlando, Florida

Alfred Degranfinreid II, Metropolitan Nashville Government, Nashville, Tennessee

Daniel Redstone, FAIA, Redstone Architects, Bloomfield Hills, Michigan

David Clusiau, Assoc. AIA, NORR Limited Architects & Engineers, Toronto

Kathy Schley, Battle Creek Police Department, Battle Creek, Michigan

Rona Rothenberg, FAIA, County of Alameda, Oakland, California

Thomas Hoepf, FAIA, exp, Chicago

Image credits

Greg Dowling - OkanaganCorrectionalCentre_AndrewLatreille_ExteriorEntryFacade

Andrew Latreille

edited_Greg Dowling - OkanaganCorrectionalCentre_AndrewLatreille_DayRoom

Andrew Latreille

edited_Greg Dowling - OkanaganCorrectionalCentre_AndrewLatreille_MainEntry

Andrew Latreille

Greg Dowling - OkanaganCorrectionalCentre_AndrewLatreille_StaffLounge

Andrew Latreille