Inside the plan to replace Trump's border wall with a high-tech ecotopia Otra Nation, as the state is called, is a high-tech ecotopia, powered by vast solar farms and connected with a hyperloop transportation system. The proposal calls for an agreement that would turn the border into an unincorporated territory for both nations, with an independent local government and non-voting representatives in the US and Mexican legislatures. Its new government would dismantle the central US-Mexico border in favor of biometric checkpoints on each side of Otra Nation, preserving and restoring watersheds and local ecosystems. The countries could end up in disputes over defense, border security, or anything else Otra Nation's government couldn't manage alone. The team describes a sophisticated biometric ID program at the borders of Otra Nation, but there's also a heavy dose of utopianism - as architect and collective member Tegan Bukowski puts it, people will respect borders because the borders are no longer oppressive. Whether Otra Nation is a long-shot proposal or a pointedly political art project, Made Collective is effectively mirroring the administration's approach to the wall: an unprecedented civil engineering initiative that exists more vividly in the realm of imagination than policy. Otra Nation's proposal can be vague and sweeping, but so is Trump's plan for a massive, constantly changing, possibly invisible, and supposedly Mexico-funded barrier.
Would Trump's border wall cost the same as one and a half U.S. aircraft carriers? "We've checked in with The Navy; if we don't pass the 2017 budget, they're talking here about five ships that won't be available to sail just out of the Western region - and 15 worldwide...the money for the wall? That's, by the way, one and a half aircraft carriers," Peters was quoted as saying on April 24, 2017 in a Politico news article. During his campaign, Trump initially said he could build a wall for $4 billion and later estimated $6 billion to $7 billion. In July 2016, Bernstein Research, a firm that analyzes material costs, put the price tag at $15 billion to $25 billion, for a wall that stretches 1,000 miles and is 40 feet high, which was Trump's initial desired height. Peters' spokesman pointed to a Congressional Research Service report from April 2017 that places the cost of each new "Navy Ford Class Aircraft Carrier" at approximately $12.9 billion. Still, when we do the math, it appears Peters slightly underestimated his comparison: Building a $21.6 billion border wall would cost about 1.67 times the price of these new warships. Democratic Congressman Scott Peters recently claimed the estimated price of President Trump's border wall is the same as the cost of "One and a half aircraft carriers." Peters slightly underestimates the 1.67 aircraft carriers the U.S. could build for the cost of Trump's border wall.
Trump's Border Wall Prototypes Are Complete. Now What? The eight looming prototypes rising from the California desert were in keeping with President Donald Trump's desire for a "Physically imposing" barrier between the U.S. and Mexico. The border wall prototypes were made exactly to specification: Four from concrete and four others from non-concrete materials that could be used for stretches of barrier that can be seen through. CBP personnel will run comprehensive "Breachability" tests on the completed prototypes, each 18 to 30 feet high, and on separate, smaller mock-ups at a nearby facility, agency officials said. Tests on the prototypes will be used to determine "Whether they can withstand breaching methods and equipment," CBP Acting Deputy Commissioner Ron Vitiello said. The agency might select one winner, but it's more likely to identify the best features from each of the prototypes to design the specifications for another RFP, or request for proposal, for a new and improved prototype design. According to a rendering released by U.S. Customs and Border Protection officials, Trump's wall has been envisioned as a multi-faceted barrier that features a concrete stretch facing the U.S. and a non-concrete stretch facing Mexico that would allow officials to see through it. The same process for the round of prototypes just completed took about seven months.