OTAY MESA, Calif. (KGTV) - Eight border wall prototypes erected along the U.S.-Mexico border crossing in South San Diego County will soon be dismantled, a Border Patrol source confirmed to 10News Friday.
The area is being cleared to make way for the secondary border fence, the official said.
The Department of Homeland Security hired companies to build the prototypes, which were finished in October 2017.
The designs were constructed to the Border Patrol’s requirements and stood 30 feet high, most made of thick concrete.
“We’ll look at things like aesthetics, how penetrable they area, how resistant they are to tampering, and then scaling or anti-climb features,” CBP Deputy Commissioner Ronald Vitiello said in 2017.
Over two months, Customs and Border Protection officials tested the walls using power tools, hand tools, and other methods. The CBP evaluated the prototypes to determine if anyone could get through by climbing or digging.
The vendors hired to complete the work included Caddell Construction of Alabama, KWR Construction of Arizona, ELTA North America Inc. of Maryland, W.G. Yates & Sons Construction Company of Mississippi, Fisher Sand & Gravel Co. of Arizona, and Texas Sterling Construction Co. of Texas.
Much of the input for the designs came from Border Patrol agents.
"There was never an intent to pick one and copy that along the entire U.S. border. The entire concept literally was how can we do this better," San Diego Sector Border Patrol Chief Rodney Scott told 10News in 2018. "But we're not picking one of these walls over the other walls, and we never planned on doing that. So, depending on the terrain or the environment, it could be any one of these? Correct."
President Trump toured the site in March 2018, alongside Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen.
“It will save thousands and thousands of lives, save taxpayers hundreds of billions of dollars by reducing crime, drug flow, welfare fraud, and burdens on schools and hospitals. The wall will save hundreds of billions of dollars — many, many times what it’s going to cost,” said Trump after his review of the prototypes.