The prison of Antwerp was built between 1854 and 1859. Architect Joseph Dumont made the design by order of the Ministry of Justice and according to the insights of Edouard Ducpétiaux, the inspector-general of the prison system at that time. The result was a cellular prison based on the panopticon model: a star-shaped building with a central core and three adjoining wings, two of which include cells on three levels and one with cells on four levels.In the second half of the seventies, the prison, and especially the separate wings, was thoroughly renovated, followed by wing C and the covered yard in 1978. In the eighties, a new building for the semi-release ward was raised within the walls, wing B was renovated and the existing central core was completely demolished and rebuilt in four levels. In 1995, wing A and the kitchen were modernized. In 2000, the institution renovated the psychiatric ward and the women's ward. The past two years, yard A and B were completely modernized. In 2010, the administrative complex was located in a former official residence.