Menard Correctional Center, known prior to 1970 as Southern Illinois Penitentiary, is an Illinois state prison located in the town of Chester in Randolph County, Illinois. It houses maximum-security and high medium-security adult males. The average daily population as of 2007 is 3,410.Menard Correctional Center opened in March 1878; it's the second oldest operating prison in Illinois, and, by a large margin, the state's largest prison. Menard once housed death row; however, on January 10, 2003 the Condemned Unit closed when former Governor George Ryan granted clemency to all Illinois death row inmates. It is a part of the Illinois Department of Corrections.Menard Correctional Center's average prisoner age is 34 years old. Each inmate's average annual cost totals $19,190.00.Current facilityAs of 2006, Menard Correctional Center has a total of 2600acre, 41 of which are inside the grounds.The grounds are composed of six housing units. The South Lowers Housing Unit and the South Uppers Housing Unit house inmates with moderate aggression levels and those who currently have job assignments. The North I Cell House contains the Protective Custody Unit, the Step-Down Unit, and General Population. The North II Cell House contains inmates in disciplinary segregation, administrative detention, and the general population. The East Cell House is heavily monitored. Inmates assigned here are classified as either Level E, High, or Moderate escape risk. The West Cell House holds inmates that are either high or moderate escape risk and are classified as High Aggressive Inmates.Within the grounds there is also the Inmate Dining Hall, Chapel, Health Care Unit, Receiving and Classification Unit, Education Building, Maintenance and telecommunications Departments, Menard Division of Illinois Correctional Industries, and Randolph Hall, which acts as Menard’s training complex for prison employees.