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Region completes work on international infrastructure project with Mexico

The Pacific Rim Region recently completed construction on the southbound Interstate 5 freeway lane reconfiguration project, which allowed the new Mexican inspection station, El Chaparral, to officially open for operations along the busy San Diego - Tijuana border on November 1, 2012.

The need for an interim solution grew out of the timing difference between the completion of El Chaparral and the funding for Phase III of the San Ysidro Land Port of Entry project, which includes the permanent realignment of the I-5 freeway. After contemplating different options and conducting traffic studies, GSA and the Mexican government agreed the best solution involved curving the freeway to connect to a temporary roadway in Tijuana to El Chaparral. GSA worked closely with a diverse group of bi-national federal, state, and local agencies to develop and execute the interim solution.

GSA quickly sprang into action and worked diligently to negotiate and award the contract under an extremely tight time frame. The team and GSA's contractor coordinated and communicated temporary lane closures during the evening hours to ensure the traveling public was not impacted by the required lane work.

“A project of this magnitude has many challenges, from site, construction and environmental issues to funding and communication requirements.” said Abdee Gharavi, Land Ports of Entry Director. “We have an exceptional team in place on this project. They worked closely together under an extremely tight time frame to ensure the reconfiguration project was completed on time. I want to thank the entire team and recognize their success in achieving this important objective.”

El Chaparral opened on schedule on November 1. GSA is optimistic that the additional capacity provided by El Chaparral will have a positive impact on border crossing into Mexico once travelers become familiar with the new traffic pattern.

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