Border Wall: Testing begins on prototypes - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

Border Wall: Testing begins on prototypes

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SAN DIEGO (NEWS 8) - Eight border wall prototypes that were constructed in Otay Mesa have begun their testing phase as part of President Trump's border wall plans.

Crews will experiment with each prototype's ability to repel efforts to get over, under and through the models.

Most of the eight prototypes are nearly 30-feet tall and are mainly composed of concrete and steel. They're expected to be tested for security at the end of next month.

Congress would still need to approve a $1.8 billion budget to officially begin construction.

The prototypes form a tightly packed row of imposing concrete and metal panels, including one with sharp metal edges on top. Another has a surface resembling an expensive brick driveway.

The models, which cost the government up to $500,000 each, were spaced 30 feet (9.1 meters) apart. Slopes, thickness and curves vary. One has two shades of blue with white trim. The others are gray, tan or brown — in sync with the desert.

Bidding guidelines call for the prototypes to stand between 18 and 30 feet (5.5 and 9.1 meters) high and be able to withstand at least an hour of punishment from a sledgehammer, pickaxe, torch, chisel or battery-operated tools.

Features also should prevent the use of climbing aids such as grappling hooks, and the segments must be "aesthetically pleasing" when viewed from the U.S. side.

The administration hasn't said how many winners it will pick or whether Trump will weigh in himself.

There is currently 654 miles (1,052 kilometers) of single-layer fence on the 1,954-mile (3,143-kilometer) border, plus 51 miles (82 kilometers) of double- and triple-layer fence.

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