The Biden Administration and the U.S. General Services Administration (GSA) today announced major land port modernization and construction projects funded through the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law signed by President Biden last year. The law includes $3.4 billion for GSA to build and modernize land ports of entry on the country’s northern and southern borders.
More than $100 million has been allocated to complete the final phase of the Calexico West LPOE modernization and expansion project, reducing border wait times and enhancing U.S. Customs and Border Protection’s ability to conduct its mission.
More than $115 million to complete the modernization of the San Luis I Land Port of Entry (LPOE) in San Luis, AZ., an important port for the U.S. food industry and related supply chains.
The investments will improve commerce and trade; create good-paying construction jobs; and incorporate new and innovative sustainability features.
“America’s land ports are vital to our economy and our security, with billions of dollars in goods and services crossing our borders every day,” said GSA Administrator Robin Carnahan. “These bipartisan investments are a historic opportunity to modernize our land ports in ways that will create good-paying jobs and strengthen supply chains while enhancing safety and security.”
“Our underfunded and outdated infrastructure has real costs to families, our economy, and our global competitiveness,” said Senior Advisor & White House Infrastructure Coordinator Mitch Landrieu. “President Biden’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law is investing in strengthening our supply chains, including our land ports which are vital for moving goods across our borders.”
Billions of dollars in goods and services pass through U.S. land ports every day. But commercial capacity at many land ports is limited by outdated infrastructure, resulting in long lines and wait times for commercial traffic. Most of the 26 major modernization projects that will be funded through the law have elements that will enhance commercial processing capabilities.
These projects will also support U.S. Customs and Border Protection’s mission to safeguard America’s borders. For example, many of these modernization projects will allow CBP to more effectively deploy the latest technology to identify high-risk activity and shipments, combat drug trafficking, and increase operational security.
“This is a once-in-a-generation investment that will enhance CBP’s mission to facilitate lawful trade and travel while protecting the American people and strengthen our borders,” said CBP Commissioner Chris Magnus. “CBP’s ability to identify, screen, and inspect high-risk persons or cargo depends greatly on the operational utility of its land port of entry inspection facilities. This investment will improve our operational capabilities and facility infrastructure, as well as help mitigate the negative economic impact of border wait times, facilitate the economic development and growth in the border communities, and benefit the American economy on the border and beyond.”
The $3.4 billion in direct spending by GSA is estimated to support, on average, nearly 6,000 annual jobs over the next 8 years; add $3.23 billion in total labor income across the United States; contribute an additional $4.5 billion to the National Gross Domestic Product; and generate hundreds of millions of dollars in tax revenue for the state, local, and federal governments.
“The land ports of entry create important investment opportunities in local communities. We are excited to work with local communities to maximize the quality of connections, achieve sustainability goals, and create local jobs and business opportunities,” said PBS Commissioner Nina Albert.