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Melbourne Assessment Prison

The information below is specific to the Melbourne Assessment Prison. 

Please also refer to the general information about visiting a prisoner which is the same for all prisons in Victoria. This includes details of how to arrange to visit a prisoner for the first time, what identification you will need to take with you and what you cannot take into prisons.

Getting there

Melbourne Assessment Prison is on the corner of Spencer and La Trobe Streets in the Melbourne Central Business District. It is 250m north of Southern Cross Station and is accessible by trams travelling along Spencer and La Trobe Streets.

Visiting times

To visit a prisoner as a personal visitor, you must be on their approved list (refer to Arranging a visit in the general information for prison visitors). Once you are on the list, you can visit at any of the times below.

Professional or police visitors are advised to contact the prison for information about applying for a visit.

Visits are not conducted on Christmas Day or Good Friday.

Contact visits

Mainstream & Acute Assessment Unit (AAU) Mainstream prisoners
Sunday 8.30am–1.00pm Children permitted
Wednesday 9am–1.15pm Children permitted
  1.30pm–3.30pm Adults only
Saturday 12.30pm–3.30pm Adults only
Unit 9, 10 & AAU Protection prisoners
Sunday 2.30pm–3.30pm Children permitted
Saturday 8.30am–10.30am Adults only
Unit 8 prisoners
Sunday 1.15pm–2.15pm Children permitted
Saturday 10.45am–12.15pm Adults only

Visits last about one hour. 

The last visit commences at 3pm. 

Up to three adult visitors and a reasonable number of children are able to visit a prisoner on child contact visit times. 

Prisoners are entitled to one contact visit per week. The week starts on Sunday.

Non-contact (box) visits

Mainstream & AAU Mainstream prisoners
Sunday 8.30am–1.00pm
Monday, Wednesday, Thursday 8.30am–3.30pm
Tuesday 11.15am-3.30pm
Friday 8.30am–11.00am
Saturday 12.30pm–3.30pm
Unit 8,9, 10 & Protection prisoners
Sunday 1.15pm–3.30pm
Tuesday 9.30am–11.00am
Saturday 8.30am–12.15pm

The last visit commences at 3pm. 

If a prisoner you are visiting is ineligible for contact visits, they may have just one visit for one hour per week. For all other prisoners, box visits last about 30 minutes.  

Prisoners are able to have a box visit on the days and hours outlined in the table above except on the day that they have a contact visit.

During box visits, no touching is possible – there is a glass partition that separates you from the person you are visiting and all speaking is done through an intercom. Seating for two adult visitors is available.

Property & money


Clothing and items allowance per prisoner*

Given that most prisoners are only likely to be at Melbourne Assessment Prison for a short period, only a limited amount of clothing will be accepted. Prisoners are permitted the following items only:

  • 6 pairs of jocks or boxer shorts
  • 6 pairs of socks
  • 2 singles
  • 2 windcheaters or tracksuit tops or jumpers or jackets 
  • Court clothing (This includes: trousers, jacket, shirt, tie,& dress shoes)
  • 4 tops (t-shirt, polo top, long sleeve topuit pants, trousers, jeans, shorts)
  • 1 pair of pyjamas
  • 1 pair of shoes/runners
  • 1 pair of scuffs/slides/thongs
  • 1 belt (small buckle - subject to Prison discretion)
  • 1 cap
  • 2 pair of reading glasses in soft case
  • 6 books
  • 6 magazines
  • 6 photographs (laminated/polaroids NOT accepted)

 * Exemptions to above apply only with General Manager or delegate approval.

Not accepted

  • Hooded / quilted / puffy jackets or tops - including all camouflage clothing
  • No medication or toiletries
  • Offensive / gang affiliate / high visibility / uniform / trade or advertising clothing
  • No restricted magazines
  • Items deemed unhygienic
  • Thermal clothing

You can drop property off at the front foyer of the prison between 9am and 4pm any day of the week. If the prisoner already has enough property in their possession, then additional items may not be accepted.


Refer to Property & money for details about how much money can be deposited for a prisoner and in what format.

At Melbourne Assessment Prison, money can be posted (except cash) or left in the prison’s front foyer between 9am and 4pm on any day of the week.

Prison profile

Melbourne Assessment Prison is a maximum security facility providing the primary statewide assessment and orientation services for male prisoners received into the prison system. 

Security level


Operational capacity

256 (30 June 2018)


Melbourne Assessment Prison comprises units with different roles or functions such as protection or workforce and the Acute Assessment Unit, a 15-bed, secondary psychiatric facility catering for all of the state's male prisoners. Where possible, prisoners with similar status, such as 'remanded' or 'sentenced', are accommodated together.


Planning for the Melbourne Assessment Prison began in 1974, with construction commencing in December 1983. The prison was completed in 1989 at a cost of $80 million. It was officially opened on 6 April 1989 by the then Premier of Victoria and received its first prisoners on 29 May 1989. Initially known as the Melbourne Remand Centre, the prison was originally built to accommodate remand prisoners. In 1997 the prison became the reception prison for all male prisoners in Victoria and was renamed the Melbourne Assessment Prison.

Read Melbourne Assessment Prison Visitor Information