SAN DIEGO (Border Report) — Back in February, crews began working on a project to replace two border barriers at the westernmost point of the southern border.
The existing walls, only 18-feet tall, were corroded, in danger of falling apart, and had become a danger to the public and anyone in the area, according to U.S. Customs and Border Protection and the Border Patrol.
The project called for replacing the structures with 30-foot bollards.
The first one was finished in late July.
Since then, crews have begun working on the second barrier, the one that actually divides Mexico and the United States.
It’s also the iconic fence that runs into the Pacific Ocean.
On a bluff overlooking the water is where another section of this same barrier affords the public from both sides of the border a place to meet with the wall between them.
This stretch of fencing will also be replaced.
Activists and migrant advocates have been against the project from the beginning.
They say the new and taller wall system will not only prevent people from gathering but ruin the aesthetics and will make it more dangerous for migrants to scale the barriers.
Local, state and federal lawmakers from the San Diego area have lobbied President Joe Biden to keep a campaign promise of not building any more border wall sections during his administration.
As of now, the president has not committed to stopping the project.
The work on the fence now under construction is expected to take a few months.
Recently, during a protest on the south side of the border, Daniel Watman from Friends of Friendship Park, a group trying to stop the construction, said the walls aren’t needed.
“They just keep on insisting on this,” said Watman. “We want to send the message that this land shouldn’t be divided and it should be recognized that we belong to the earth on both sides of the border.”
Watman is also in charge of a garden that is divided in two by the border wall.
He says the construction work has killed almost all the plants and vegetation in the garden.
Watman fears the Border Patrol will never allow him and other volunteers to tend the garden in the future.