Renovations to begin next week at Otay Mesa border crossing

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SAN DIEGO (CNS) – A major renovation of Otay Mesa Port of Entry, the state’s busiest commercial border crossing, will get underway next week, federal officials announced Tuesday.

Among changes included in the project, which is slated to begin Monday, will be the addition of six lanes to the station’s pedestrian and commercial processing stations, construction of a commercial annex building and relocation of Secure Electronic Network for Rapid Inspection facilities, according to a U.S. Customs and Border Protection report.

The improvements will allow the port to keep up with northbound traffic volumes and fulfill security requirements, according to CBP officials. During fiscal 2019, the facility processed more than $50 billion worth of goods and 10 million travelers, according to federal officials.

“The new infrastructure for commercial and pedestrian processing improvements will enhance operations and safety at Otay Mesa Port of Entry for both the traveling public and CBP employees,” said Pete Flores, director of San Diego field operations for the federal agency. “These improvements will allow CBP to continue protecting our nation’s borders while facilitating the trade and flow of commerce between the United States and Mexico.”

SAN DIEGO, CALIFORNIA – MARCH 20: Commercial freight trucks line up to cross into the United States from Mexico through the U.S. Customs and Border Protection – Otay Mesa Port of Entry during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic on March 20, 2020 in San Diego, California. The United States and Mexico announced a temporary ban on non-essential and leisure travel across the U.S. – Mexican border, but both countries emphasized that trade activity would not be impacted. (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)

Though the facility will remain open during the course of the project, the public is advised to be prepared for changes in traffic patterns throughout the three-year construction timeline.

Construction will cost a total of $137 million, a price tag that includes the purchase of a 10-acre parcel next to the station. Officials expect the project to be complete in spring of 2023.

San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer hailed the imminent start of the slate of improvements to the station straddling the U.S.-Mexico line.

“We welcome the federal government’s investment in our border infrastructure, as we’ve seen firsthand the positive impact of the recently completed expansion of the San Ysidro Land Port of Entry,” he said.

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