U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) announced the selection of four construction companies to build concrete prototypes of the wall President Trump has said he wants to build along with border with Mexico.
The four companies are Caddell Construction of Montgomery, Ala.; Fisher Sand and Gravel dba Fisher Industries of Tempe, Ariz.; Texas Sterling Construction of Houston; and W.G. Yates & Sons Construction Co. of Philadelphia, Miss.
“We are extremely excited and grateful for the opportunity to be a part of this important project,” said Fisher Industries President Thomas Fisher.
“Fisher Sand & Gravel operations in the Southwest gives firsthand knowledge of the terrain and landscape of the territory and the challenges that come with them,” the company said in a statement.
Established in southwest North Dakota in 1952, Fisher Sand & Gravel Co. is the parent company of Fisher Industries. The company has more than 60 years of experience in aggregates processing and is currently ranked as one of the top 25 sand and gravel-producing companies in the United States.
“This prototype wall construction is part of a wide range of tools and technologies that we employ as part of a tremendously broad and far-reaching effort to secure the homeland,” said CBP acting deputy commissioner Ron Vitiello during an announcement of the awards.
These concrete prototypes will serve two important ends, according to CBP. First, given their robust physical characteristics, like, reinforced concrete, between 18-30 ft. high, the concrete border wall prototypes are designed to deter illegal crossings in the area in which they are constructed.
Second, the concrete border wall prototypes will allow CBP to evaluate the potential for new wall and barrier designs that could complement the wall and barrier designs we have used along the border over the last several years. As the border security environment continues to evolve, CBP will continually refresh its own inventory of tools to meet that evolution.
President Trump said that he was prepared to shut down the government if lawmakers did not approve funds for the wall he promised during his presidential campaign.
Trump initially insisted that Mexico would pay for the wall, but its leaders have flatly rejected that idea. Now the president wants Congress to fund it.
The Department of Homeland Security has estimated the cost of the wall at $21 billion. An MIT study puts the price tag at $38 billion. Other estimates are even higher.