Seven prisons are to be shut down and two more will be partially closed in England, the Ministry of Justice has announced.
The move will result in the removal of 2,600 "old and uneconomic" places and is aimed at saving £63 million in running costs.
Justice Secretary Chris Grayling announced that 200 places at private prisons used to deal with the post-riots bulge will also be taken out of use.
He also announced plans to build new house-blocks within the grounds of four existing prisons to provide an additional 1,260 "modern and cost-effective" places.
A new 'super' prison has also been proposed, which would be 25 percent bigger than Britain's current largest prison. It will be built either in London, north-west England or north Wales.
A feasibility study into its construction is to begin soon.