SANTA TERESA, N.M. (AP) — Construction workers have completed more than half of a new barrier along a desolate stretch of the U.S.-Mexico border in southern New Mexico as part of President Donald Trump’s fight against drug trafficking and illegal immigration.
U.S. Customs and Border Protection officials confirmed this week that more than 8,100 panels spanning more than 11 miles (18 kilometers) had been constructed as of Aug. 8.
Work on the $73 million project west of Santa Teresa, near New Mexico’s state line with Texas, began in April.
Officials have touted the new wall as harder to get over, under and through. When finished, it will cover 20 miles (32-kilometers), replacing old post and rail barriers that were meant to stop vehicles but have been useless against people trying to cross on foot.
Environmentalists are suing over the project.