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Border Wall Prototypes Take Shape

Monday, October 9, 2017

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The U.S. House Homeland Security Committee on Wednesday approved a bill that would set aside $10 billion for the proposed border wall, as the first images of the prototype wall sections being built in California emerged.

Even as some aspects of the wall plan seem to be coming together, though, the project is facing a number of lawsuits, including a newly announced grievance from a group of butterfly scientists.

Wall Funding Bill

The $15 billion Border Security for America Act involves a number of expenditures related to border security, both at the southern border with Mexico and at U.S. ports of entry. The wall and its associated technology will act as “tactical infrastructure and technology to achieve full operational control and situational awareness,” according to the bill. The $10 billion would fund the wall itself, as well as fencing, air assets and “other barriers.”

Border wall construction
Customs and Border Protection

On Tuesday, Customs and Border Protection revealed its first photos of the border wall prototypes being built near San Diego.

The bill passed the committee by a vote of 18-12, with all Republicans in favor and all Democrats opposed. It will move on to the House as a whole, where The Hill reports that it is expected to pass, but the subsequent vote in the Senate may be a different story.

First Wall Prototype Photos

The vote came as Customs and Border Protection revealed its first photos of the border wall prototypes being built near San Diego. The agency posted images from above the worksite on its Flickr account Tuesday (Oct. 3), and the same day posted to Twitter pictures from the ground, depicting progress at the site of the concrete wall prototype.

On Wednesday, the San Diego office of CBP released a video of some of the construction work.

Several contractors are working on both concrete and non-concrete prototype wall segments as part of a series of contracts issued last month by CBP. The work is being done near the Otay Mesa Port of Entry, according to the agency.

Court Challenges

While Congress debates funding for the border wall, some groups have taken legal action to try to prevent its construction. On Sept. 20, the state of California filed suit against the federal government, arguing that it was attempting to circumvent necessary environmental reviews.

And the Texas Observer reports that on Wednesday (Oct. 4), the National Butterfly Center, in Mission, Texas, near the national border, notified the Department of Homeland Security of its intent to sue the government agency over construction related to the wall. The Butterfly Center says contractors have begun to clear vegetation and widen a roadway on its property in preparation for the wall, in violation of the nonprofit’s property rights. The Center also raised concerns about the environmental review process.

The border wall, a signature component of President Donald J. Trump’s 2016 campaign, was originally touted as being a concrete wall along the entire international border, but more recently, Trump has indicated that parts could be made of some other material, and could be more akin to a large fence.

The U.S.-Mexico border stretches nearly 2,000 miles, with about 670 miles currently divided by fencing, much of which was built after a 2006 authorization signed by former President George W. Bush. Current fencing includes stretches of post-and-rail, chain-link, sheet metal and other fencing materials.


Tagged categories: concrete; Government; Government contracts

Comment from Thomas Van Hooser, (10/9/2017, 8:28 AM)

Outstanding!!! Illeagle immigration must be treated like cancer. To cure it one must first isolate and then treat for infection.

Comment from Mario Colica, (10/9/2017, 9:57 AM)

Only one recommandation ; if the wall has to be bulted , do not forget that corrosion there is very harsh and both concrete and steel must be protected likely with Zinc coatings

Comment from Earl Briggs, (10/9/2017, 5:16 PM)

Honestly believe there is no other option, however environmental and wildlife concerns should be highly considered.

Comment from Mark Anater, (10/10/2017, 7:52 AM)

It's a massively expensive way to make an anti-immigrant statement. The main purpose is to give Trump administration supporters a physical manifestation of their fears and anger about Latin Americans. You may notice that no such wall is contemplated for Canada, and fairly ask why.

Comment from leon Fotakos, (10/11/2017, 9:23 AM)

It's about time that we started the wall. I believe there was bipartisan support to build the wall back in 2006. And to respond to Mark Anater I don't believe we have 11 million illegal Canadian immigrant running around the United States.

Comment from Michael Halliwell, (10/11/2017, 11:15 AM)

Hey Mark....if you build a wall on the Canadian border, there's nowhere to go for all the folks getting out of the US (right now we have a bit of an issue with illegals and refugees crossing into Canada from the US....wherever they can find a place to head north)

Comment from Mark Anater, (10/12/2017, 8:00 AM)

The large majority of undocumented immigrants come here legally as visitors, then overstay their 90 day limit. A wall would do nothing about that, and unless you want to shut down tourism or massively increase domestic monitoring, you can't do much about the visitors either. As a symbol of fear and intimidation, a border wall works fine.

Comment from Tim Sampson, (10/12/2017, 9:03 AM)

Another useless expenditure for political agendas and xenophobia when there are much bigger issues to be tackled. Most illegals arrive legally and overstay their visas, it's a small minority that attempt to make the dangerous border crossing on foot. Illegal immigration is already down because of better enforcement and the threat of deportation.

Comment from leon Fotakos, (10/12/2017, 10:03 AM)

And in 8 years when this administration is gone and the next one comes in. And the new administration has an Obama like attitude toward illegal immigration. We will have a big beautiful wall to prevent people from crossing over the border.

Comment from John Perez, (10/12/2017, 12:16 PM)

It’s about the drugs coming into the US as well.

Comment from T W, (10/13/2017, 9:43 AM)

Crossings down 76% already.

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