US commissions first prototypes for controversial border wall

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Four prototypes of Donald Trump’s controversial border wall with Mexico will be built by companies bidding to take on the project, US officials have said.

The companies have been chosen to build 30ft x 30ft concrete mock-ups of the wall proposed to seal of the entire southern US border, the country’s Customs and Border Protection said.

Tests for resistance to tampering and penetration using small tools will then be carried out on the models, a spokesman told the BBC.

The four $500,000 (£387,000) contracts have been offered in a bid to help Trump’s government “refine the design standards” of the border wall, CBP deputy commissioner Ronald Vitiello added.

He told the BBC: “Testing will look at things like the aesthetics of it, how penetrable they are, how resistant they are to tampering, and scaling or anti-claim features.” 

Prototypes of the wall, which was a key promise during the President’s election campaign, will also be fitted with cable conduits for sensors and cameras.

The four companies, from Alabama, Arizona, Texas and Mississippi, have been given four months to construct their designs.

Four more contracts will be offered for prototypes to be made from other materials other than concrete to be built.


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