WASHINGTON—About two miles of border wall are being built per week right now, according to Acting Homeland Security Secretary Kevin McAleenan.
“[It’s] coming along aggressively,” he told President Donald Trump during a meeting at the White House on June 12. “By the end of next year, over 400 miles [will be built].”
Trump predicted it might be closer to 500 miles, and said, “We have to kick and scream for every inch because the Democrats just will not give us what we need.”
New and replacement wall is currently being constructed near San Diego, as well as San Luis, Arizona, and El Paso and the Rio Grande Valley in Texas, according to Customs and Border Protection (CBP).
Ground excavation is underway in Otay Mesa in the San Diego Sector, CBP said on June 11. The 14 miles of new wall will act as a secondary barrier. It will be 30 feet high and “will be outfitted with smart detection technology that keeps Border Patrol agents safe while deterring illicit cross-border activity,” CBP wrote on Twitter.
In San Luis, Arizona, around 22 miles of primary fencing is being constructed, with about 1 mile completed by May 30, according to CBP.
A total of 44 miles of steel bollard pedestrian barrier is to replace ineffective fencing in the Yuma, El Centro, and San Diego sectors.
And in the Rio Grande Valley—where the river, and its propensity to flood, causes additional challenges for fencing options—the focus is on levee walls that will double as border barrier, as well as gates to close gaps in existing fencing.