SAN DIEGO (Border Report) — The reopening of Ped West two weeks ago was anticipated for many reasons including the likelihood of delivering more customers from south of the border to an outlet mall right across the street.
But it has not happened as border crossings have been far below expectations.
The head of San Ysidro’s Chamber of Commerce, Jason Wells, told Tijuana’s El Sol Newspaper last week, that he hopes the number of border commuters using Ped West increases in the coming weeks.
“We’re doing well, but the more crossings we have the better for San Ysidro, I expect it will take a few more weeks to balance the flow on both sides,” Wells said.
Since it became operational again earlier this month, it only reopened in a northbound direction from 6 a.m. until 2 p.m. The southbound lanes into Mexico remain closed.
Before the coronavirus pandemic and essential travel restrictions shut it down, it was open 24/7 with about 20,000 people using it on a daily basis in both directions.
Now, Wells said, the number is only “a couple of thousand per day.”
Employees at a Coffee Bean and Tea said they’ve noticed only a few additional customers since Ped West reopened with a few more on weekends, but nothing “out of the ordinary.”
The manager of a sports memorabilia shop who did not want to provide her name, said she has been disappointed by the number of shoppers who use Ped West to cross the border as they were expecting more clients to return and drive up profits.
Border Report reached out to U.S. Customs and Border Protection for official figures, but our request went unanswered.
Border Report also approached the operators of Las Americans Premium Outlets Mall to see how beneficial the reopening of Ped West has been to its tenants, but was referred to its public relations representative who has yet to answer our questions.