Photography

Blog

URBAN EXPLORATION: ABANDONED BROWARD CORRECTIONAL INSTITUTION

Urbex is something I've been wanting do for a while now, it gives you a very unique and different perspective when taking photos. Over the last few weekends, I've been out and about searching for places to explore and document, especially abandoned places that tell a story.

Recently, I stumbled upon BCI, an abandoned prison in west Broward county, FL. about 45 minutes from where I live. Now covered in graffiti and torn apart by vagrants, misfits and the occasional SWAT training, this maximum security facility served as housing for some of the most dangerous female prisoners in the state. 

A bit of history on Broward Correctional Institution:

The facility was opened in 1977 to house a male inmate population. However, in its history the prison has had only female inmates. It housed female death row inmates until February 2003 when the female death row was moved to Lowell Annex. The Broward Correctional Institution served as a reception center for female inmates. As of 2011, a staff of approximately 272 individuals serviced the facility. As of 2012, 624 prisoners, all female, were housed there. The facility was closed in 2012. Closure was scheduled for May 1 of that year. The Fort Lauderdale Sun-Sentinel said “BCI was determined to have a relatively low population and a high per diem inmate cost of $111.48.” ($116.87 when adjusted for inflation)” Wikipedia

Broward Correctional Institution (BCI) was once home to Florida's female death row inmates and housed some notorious guests such as Judy Buenonano, better known as the "Black Widow" a convicted murderer who was executed by electric chair in 1998 and Aileen Wuornos, an American serial killer convicted for killing seven men by shooting them at point blank range, she received the death penalty and was executed by lethal injection in 2002. In 2003, a crime film was made about the serial killer, it was called "Monster".

 

It was a strange feeling to walk through those gates the first time. The smells, the echoes and overall emptiness give this place an indescribable eerie vibe. On the outside, the desolate post apocalyptic scene feels like you're about to see some zombies crawl out the buildings. As you make your way through the prison into the cell blocks, it's inevitable to think that some seriously evil people lived (and died) on these grounds.

Click on the pics to enlarge

A very special thanks goes to my dear friend Jen for showing me this place.