Prison Architect Wiki

A shop sells items that fulfill a variety of needs. These needs can include hygiene, food, comfort, recreation and luxury. The shop is worked by prisoners and imports items to sell for $5 (prisoner wage is $0.50/hour). You'll receive money for each sale plus a commission each day for the total goods sold.

Prisoners use money they have earned by working inside the prison. Gang prisoners uses protection money acquired from other prisoners that paid to be allowed into gang controlled areas. The shop must have more workers than there are shop fronts, as otherwise there will be nobody left to sort the goods.

Having shops around will motivate your prisoners to work harder and/or behave better but will lower the participation in volunteer reform programs. For the shop to function fully, a minimum of 2 prisoners must be assigned jobs in the shop. One prisoner will be assigned to operate the store front, and the rest will work sorting the goods onto the shelves. Other prisoners can only purchase goods from the shop during work hours, as there needs to be a working prisoner there to sell to them.

Maximum number of jobs for the room is 100 at a size of 1200m² (12 tiles per worker).


Like any deliveries, contraband can be smuggled in through shop imports, therefore it is recommended that shop items are searched upon arrival, pass through metal detectors, checkpoints, and/or come past guard dogs, to help find contraband. Goods arrive in boxes with different colors.

  • Hygiene products (soap, shampoo) in Blue Boxes.
  • Food (snacks) in Brown boxes.
  • Comfort (towels, blankets) products in Green boxes.
  • Recreation (magazines) in Green Boxes.

Operating hours[]

The shop is only open if there are prisoners on work duty to keep the shop open, and prisoners can only shop there on their own free time.

Note that during work time any prisoner who chooses not to work will be on free time. But also if you have different security level prisoners marked in the regime to have separate schedules you can set one prisoner type to be working while another security level is on free time.


It may be a good idea to place guard dogs along with metal detectors outside Shops. That way, it can filter through contraband. Make sure to have a nearby guard for searching the prisoner.