Designing a Prison

Roger Paez

From the point of view of contemporary architects, a prison project can seem like an extreme commission at first.

To a certain extent, it may appear marginal and eccentric with respect to the usual work that architects do. But that isn’t the case: the prison sets forth the most basic problems facing architecture and the role of the architect, and it does so with a degree of clarity that borders on violence. In the context of prison design, questions inevitably arise about the validity of architecture and the part that architects play.