The border with Mexico will have a new crossing in California by the end of 2024 that is expected to reduce waiting times dramatically, according to the understanding agreement signed and announced this week in Otay Mesa. The project had been conceived for years.
Representatives of California and the government of Mexico signed the agreement-commitment for the border crossing that will be the third in the San Diego-Tijuana area. The difference is that this will seek to ensure that waiting times are not greater than 20 minutes, which would solve the headache that many people experience every day, especially when crossing into California.
The current slowness to cross affects the regional economy and also causes a lot of pollution due to the enormous number of engines sometimes running for several hours.
Otay Mesa II, also called Otay Mesa East, will be added when completed to the main crossing of the San Ysidro gatehouse and the Otay Mesa crossing, near the Tijuana airport, which is only about 3 kilometers west of which it will be the new crossing.
If the project works as planned, the two existing crossings will reduce their rush hour waiting times by 50% from day one, as estimated.
The memorandum of understanding (MoU)was signed by the US General Administration of Customs and the California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) on the US side and by the Secretaries of Communications and Transportation (SCT) and the Treasury (SHCP) by the Mexican. The new crossing will help boost the economy in numbers around $ 1.8 billion annually, according to a news conference on Monday.
California Lt. Gov. EleniKounalakis said that the new port of entry would not only widen and transform economic activity, but it will also improve and smoothen the quality of life for millions of Californians and Mexicans who tend to frequently cross one of the busiest borders in the world. He further added that this is an excellent example of California’s leadership in combatting climate change. The project will go onto reducing greenhouse gas emissions along with improving mobility in the region. As for the work itself, the border crossing will have four or five lanes for vehicles and another four or five for commercial vehicles, which can be adapted for one use or another according to demand. In addition, the payment of the route will not be received at the customs inspection point but will be made electronically or in booths that will be installed on Highway 11 on the US side. The profits will be divided between both the countries.