Most of Thailand’s prisons are well past their designed capacity. Living conditions for inmates are cramped and unsanitary. Now some architecture students are trying to come up with creative solutions to improve the living environment at one Bangkok prison. They’ve been working on design proposals that would make the conditions more “humane” at the Thonburi Remand Prison.
“Treeward” is one design by students at King Mongkut’s University of Technology in Thonburi. Flowers and other plants on a balcony and a cell room that has a view of the nature outdoors. Overcrowding has become a new “punishment,” according to the Bangkok Post. Thailand has roughly 360,000 inmates, but prison capacity is around 250,000.
Inmates sleep on the floor in crowded rooms in many of the prisons. To make the most out of the space, students are suggesting mezzanine floors with an open second level.
The project also looks at small details in the prison’s design, from the dining hall’s floor tiles to the colours of paint.
“Even changing the colours can have an psychological effect on the inmates. Thai prison walls are mostly white. Bright colours like orange can help with positive thoughts.”