Panel Discussion on “San Diego/Tijuana Border Area in Transition” at CA AEP Conference
Two international ports-of-entry (POEs), San Ysidro and Otay Mesa, currently link the U.S. and Mexico in the San Diego/Tijuana region. They serve as the gateway for all movement of people and goods in the largest urban area along the entire U.S. – Mexico border, with a combined population anticipated to grow from over four million to over 5.5 million by 2020.
The capacities of the existing POEs in the region are currently being exceeded, causing excessive border wait times for commercial vehicle, personal vehicle and pedestrian trips. As trade and travel grow, border delays are expected to increase correspondingly. In response to the need to reduce border delays, enhance economic competitiveness, improve air quality, and increase border security, transportation and planning agencies on both sides of the border identified several innovative projects that are now in process: these include improvements to the existing San Ysidro and Otay Mesa POEs and implementation of a third public border crossing and associated highway connections. A privately-owned Cross Border Facility (CBF) has also been approved, which includes an international pedestrian bridge providing direct access to the Tijuana Airport. These border projects are expected to represent a major contribution to the economic and environmental health of the region, as San Diego and Tijuana together transition toward increasingly important roles in the economies of the two nations
During the California Association of Environmental Professionals (AEP) annual conference being held in San Diego on April 3-6, 2016, a panel discussion will be held on “The San Diego/Tijuana Border Area in Transition”. This will take place on Monday at 1:45 p.m. in the Coronado B room. The panel, moderated by Tammy Ching of HELIX Environmental Planning, includes Muggs Stoll (SANDAG), Bruce April (Caltrans), Osmahn Kadri (GSA), and Stacy Hall de Gomez (HELIX). The panelists have been intimately involved in the planning and CEQA/NEPA environmental processes required to bring key border projects to fruition. They will discuss the creative strategies and solutions associated with the environmental planning, permitting and implementation of these complex and innovative binational projects.