OLDHAM COUNTY, Ky. (WDRB) -- As many Kentucky jails struggle with a shortage of space, Oldham County is building a new facility that will be able to hold hundreds of additional inmates.

The new Oldham County jail off KY-146 in Buckner will house 332 inmates when construction is complete. The current jail was built in 1989 and is designed to hold 115 people.

Oldham County Jailer Mike Simpson says the additional space from the $21 million project is needed.  

“Our population has gone up," Simpson said. "We house for several different agencies. We house for a couple different adjoining counties, but we also have state inmates, federal, and we currently have a contract with immigration.”

Jails across Kentucky are being required to house more state inmates even with space running low. The new facility in Oldham County could hold more of those inmates and reduce some of the burden on nearby areas, like Jefferson County, where Metro Corrections continues to struggle with overcrowding.

Simpson says several jails around the state have closed down in recent years making space harder to find.

Once the project is complete, Oldham County will hold the most federal inmates out of any jail in the Louisville area. The jail receives money from other federal, state and local agencies for housing inmates.

If more space is needed, the facility is designed to handle 500 inmates with additions to the building.  

"If they wanted to add 100 beds to this particular location, they won't have to do anything to the kitchen or the laundry.” Simpson said. “We're only putting 332 in, but it can expand to 500."

The county expects construction to be completed by November and for the new jail to start housing inmates sometime in December.

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