U.S. officials and Mexican dignitaries gathered Monday to commemorate a groundbreaking of the new port of entry for the California-Baja California region, Otay Mesa East, expected to open in 2024.
The project aims to reduce wait times, increase economic efficiencies, cut emissions and ensure the region has the infrastructure it needs to continue growing, according to Caltrans.
“Otay Mesa East will be a vital link in strengthening the nation’s supply chain and in creating thousands of jobs, not just in the local region, but across the U.S.,” said California Lieutenant Governor Eleni Kounalakis. “Estimates show that this project will support more than $1.8 billion in trade volume and 16,000 jobs that would otherwise be lost.”
The project is 20 years in the making and a key priority of the Baja California-California Border Master Plan, led by the California State Transportation Agency, Caltrans, San Diego Association of Governments and their Mexican counterparts.
“Today we mark a historic milestone for our binational region with the groundbreaking of the new Otay Mesa East Port of Entry,” said SANDAG Chair and Encinitas Mayor Catherine Blakespear. “The collaboration it took for SANDAG and Caltrans to reach this point is truly remarkable and a symbol of the type of partnership, innovation and forward-looking mobility solutions we are working toward through the 2021 Regional Plan.”
In addition to breaking ground on the new port of entry, earlier this summer SANDAG and Caltrans announced the completion of the new southbound State Route 125 to westbound State Route 905 freeway connector in Otay Mesa as part of the project’s efforts to support regional mobility.