Prison Architect Wiki


The Foundation menu is a fundamental tool which allows the player to begin the construction and structuring of the buildings that will go in their facility.

Your workmen will respond to any foundations you lay down and will start constructing them.

Foundation Types[]

There are two types of foundation available in game:

  • Brick - the walls of the new building with this type of foundation will be a light-brown brick colour.
  • Concrete - the walls of the new building with this type of foundation will be concrete.

Despite the differing aesthetics, there is no difference between a brick or concrete foundation.


As aforementioned, your workmen are responsible for the construction of foundations and buildings. They will require two building resources in order to complete a foundation:

  • Concrete/Brick
  • Steel

These will arrive into your prison as imports automatically, delivered by a supply truck.

Workman icon.png

In order to successfully create a building, you must lay out a foundation. Initial foundations can only be square or rectangular, and will only ever have four walls unless you connect a second foundation to the first. They can be as large as the player desires; dependent on the map size. However, the larger the foundation, the longer it will take to complete. Hiring more workmen can speed up the process of construction.

After the foundation has been completed, it will require a door of any kind so that it can turn into a building. The door must be placed anywhere on one of the four steel walls. After this is done, the foundation will turn into a building that can be used for room placement or aesthetics.


You can create foundations/buildings and likewise destroy them. The bulldoze tool in the foundations sub-menu, highlighted in red, can be used to destroy and dump the remains of any and all building(s) including their foundation.

NOTE: Ensure you have an accessible garbage area, as the deconstruction of buildings results in a lot of left over rubble being created. This will need to be dumped in a garbage bag and moved to the garbage area for collection.

Auto Lights[]

The last tab in the foundations sub-menu is auto-lights which, as the name suggests, allows the automated placement of lights in a newly-created building - which can be a tedious task if done manually, especially in a large room. Auto-Lights can be activated and deactivated at the discretion of the player.

However, auto-lights though useful, is not very accurate with its placement of lights. For example, it may oddly position a light very close to the door, or in a way which is undesirable to the player.

Note: It may be opportune for the player to turn this feature off when construction large cell blocks, or any other large structure with many walls.