Homeland Security awarded four contracts Thursday to build prototypes of a non-concrete border wall on the U.S.-Mexico boundary, rounding out the finalists for President Trump’s signature campaign promise.
They join four concrete wall proposals announced last week, meaning a total of eight test walls will be built in San Diego this fall.
The goal is to help improve U.S. Customs and Border Protection’s existing wall designs.
“They will provide an innovative perspective in the application of new materials which will allow CBP to evaluate the potential for new wall and barrier designs to complement the current wall and barrier used along the Southwest border,” the agency said in a statement announcing the awards.
The new winners are Caddell Construction Co., in Montgomery, Alabama; KWR Construction Inc., in Sierra Vista, Arizona; ELTA North America Inc. from Annapolis Junction, Maryland; and W.G. Yates & Sons Construction Company in Philadelphia, Mississippi.
Both Caddell and W.G. Yates & Sons were also selected for concrete wall proposals.
The designs range from 18 to 30 feet in height, and are supposed to be impervious to attempts to climb them unassisted. They are also supposed to withstand attempts to cut through them for at least 30 minutes, and are supposed to be resistant to efforts to tunnel directly underneath.
There is already enough money to build the prototypes, but Mr. Trump is struggling to win support for actual new wall construction in the 2018 spending bills now pending in Congress.
Democrats have said they will oppose any bill that includes a penny for the wall.
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi said that includes resisting any attempt to couple wall funding with a bill to legalize illegal immigrant “Dreamers,” the young adults who have been protected by the DACA program that Mr. Trump this week said he’ll phase out.
Mrs. Pelosi said Democrats could accept some additional security to stop drugs, such as boosting the Coast Guard’s interdiction efforts, but won’t agree to new fencing.
“It does not include a wall,” she said.
Copyright © 2017 The Washington Times, LLC.