Eight different border wall prototypes are being built by six different companies hoping to win the final bid to build President Trump’s proposed border wall along the southern border of the United States. Construction began Tuesday in what many are celebrating as a major milestone on the way towards the fulfillment of a massive campaign promise.
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The project, being constructed in Sand Diego, is months behind schedule. Customs and Border Protection, the agency overseeing the project, faced backlash by some of the companies whose bids were not selected. The prototypes are expected to take about a month to complete.
It isn’t clear exactly what will come of this competition. A press release simply stated that the eight walls “will inform future design standards which will likely continue to evolve to meet the U.S. Border Patrol’s requirements.”
The wall, which President Trump has repeatedly promised would be funded by the Mexican government, is a controversial project. As this is the first tangible incarnation of the divisive idea, the planners are expecting backlash. Security around the project site is tight and expected to increase as the projects continue.
In order to keep protestors away, the wall is being built behind a smaller wall comprised of concrete barriers and chain-link fencing. Some security experts are expecting protests to equal or exceed those seen before construction of the Dakota Access Pipeline began this year.
Designs for the respective projects showed wildly differing concepts, but each of these sections is expected to be 30 feet high and 30 feet wide.
The Daily Mail notes that four of the plans call for concrete, and four are less specific. Those are to be made of “other materials.”
On Friday, touting the benefits of his wall idea in Alabama, President Trump suggested that the wall should be see-through. Clear concrete, though, is still a pipe-dream. Perhaps some of the unspecified other materials might allow people on both sides of the border to see through.
Ronald Vitiello, CBP’s acting deputy commissioner wrote in a statement: “We are committed to securing our border and that includes constructing border walls.
“Our multi-pronged strategy to ensure the safety and security of the American people includes barriers, infrastructure, technology and people.
“Moving forward with the prototypes enables us to continue to incorporate all the tools necessary to secure our border.”