Laconia To Discuss Reuse Options For Former Prison, State School | New Hampshire Public Radio

Laconia To Discuss Reuse Options For Former Prison, State School

Jun 6, 2018

The view from the former prison and mental institution in Laconia is seen in a 2011 state appraisal photograph.
Credit NH Department of Transportation

Lakes Region residents can hear more Wednesday night about plans to redevelop the site of a former state prison in Laconia.

The Lakes Region facility was a minimum-security prison from 1991 to 2009.

For nearly 100 years before that, it was the Laconia State School – a residential facility for people with developmental disabilities. It had a documented history of abuse, neglect and overcrowding.

Now, state and local officials have to decide what to do with the scenic, 200-acre property long-term.

They’ve contracted with a big Northeast consulting firm to find a reuse that might give the area an economic boost.

Early ideas include new housing, a resort, a sports complex or a mixed-use development.

The state commission on redeveloping the site will hold a public meeting to discuss their plans at 7 p.m. Wednesday at Laconia City Hall.

CORRECTION: An earlier version of this story incorrectly described the Laconia State School as a mental and psychiatric institution. In fact, it was a residential facility for people with developmental disabilities.