Published: Mon, March 20, 2017
Global Media | By Garry Long

Homeland Security issues RFPs for border wall

Homeland Security issues RFPs for border wall

However, Americans living close to the Trump border wall should be able to see something a little nicer than a colossal monstrosity from their bedroom windows, according to officials. Winners will be announced by late May. However, contractors will also have to submit a 10-foot mock-up to "allow the government to rest and evaluate the anti-destruct characteristics of the bidder's wall design".

But CBP officials said the approach was created to get the best value for the government.

A reason for the hikes could be because of the Trump administration's proposed border barrier and tougher immigration policies.

The requests, which come from U.S. Customs and Border Protection, are meant as a precursor for any company wishing for a contract to work on the construction of any portion of the wall.

The President has called for a wall that soars 65 feet in height before settling on a mere 30 feet and he often boasts that Mexico will foot the bill, despite President Enrique Peña Nieto scoffing at notion.

The little walls are supposed to be strong.

"The wall shall prevent/deter for a minimum of 30 minutes the creation a physical breach of the wall (e.g., punching through the wall) larger than 12-inches in diameter or square using sledgehammer, auto jack, pick axe, chisel, battery operated impact tools, battery operated cutting tools, oxy/acetylene torch or other similar hand-held tools", the outlined proposal states.

Even before President Trump took office his transition team was already taking steps to build the wall here. Once the government has determined a model, the prototypes may be demolished. Aesthetically pleasing - at least on the US side.

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They say the Trump administration wants to build a 30-foot-high wall that looks good from the north side and is hard to climb or cut through. There was no mention of how the Mexican side should look. Ultimately, the wall will cut through at least 1,000 miles of mountains, desert and farms - possibly through eminent domain land grabs - bordering the southwest border in California, Arizona, New Mexico and Texas. Mexican newspapers have even maligned Latino-owned construction firms in the US that plan to bid on the project. The estimated cost of building the wall is between US$15 billion and US$21 billion.

"Using a similar method of analysis, it is projected that Phase II would create over $500,000,000 of economic impact and over 5,000 new jobs", reads the two-page letter accompanied by a map and an animated drawing of the proposed structure.

In Congress, some Republicans and many Democrats have opposed spending billions for an untested and possibly ineffectual border barrier.

It is not clear whether Trump will stick to campaign pledges for a continuous wall on the 2,000-mile border, although Department of Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly has said he would be looking at a variety of ways to secure the border, including high-tech surveillance. The Mexican government has rejected the possibility.

Although Trump's ascension to the White House has generally been a bad thing for Mexican companies, with the Mexican peso plummeting amid Trump's threats to renegotiate trade deals and tax Mexican imports, Cemex's stock has risen to eight-year highs in recent months.

Customs and Border Protection issued a solicitation for contractors to begin bidding for the border wall contract. The government hasn't said when the wall will be built but the notices suggest some of the wall can replace existing fencing.

Flores was offered $2,900 for the land, the same amount that was offered when President George W. Bush's administration attempted to seize their land to build a wall more than a decade ago.

ProPublica is a Pulitzer Prize-winning investigative newsroom.

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