“It’s going to be a big, fat, beautiful wall,” US president Donald Trump told supporters at a campaign rally back in June 2016.
The presidential hopeful promised to build a 1,900-mile wall between the United States and Mexico in a bid to deter illegal immigrants from entering the US.
Almost two years on, Trump is in the White House and his big, fat, beautiful wall is finally coming to fruition.
Eight companies have successfully constructed eight 30 foot by 30 foot prototypes in the middle of the San Diego desert. They have been well tested to ensure that they’re up to scratch. Now they await approval from the man himself.
— Red Ice TV (@redicetv) December 10, 2017
Trump will be in California today to inspect the prototypes, but what exactly is the President looking for?
Trump wall prototypes: the President’s ideal wall
Big, fat and beautiful are likely still the three main checkboxes that Trump wants his wall to tick. However, the official requirements offer a little more insight into what the US government is looking for.
Each wall must be at least 18 feet tall. However, the brief given to contractors suggested 30-foot to be the ideal height for Trump’s wall. All eight companies have built 30-foot tall prototypes, so Trump will be happy in that regard.
Each wall must also be buried at least six feet underground. This is to prevent people from tunnelling their way into the United States underneath the wall.
Trump was a little vague on this one, so we can only assume that big and fat go hand in hand.
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While there was no recommended weight, this does seem like something that Trump would care about. A thick, heavy wall would likely be harder for hopeful illegal immigrants to break through. One of the requirements that each prototype will be tested for is that it cannot be broken through in under an hour with the use of hand-held tools.
A 30-foot wall stretching 1,900 miles across the border has the potential to be a huge eyesore.
However, Trump’s wall must not take away from the surrounding environment. The colour, texture and general appearance of the wall must fit in with its surroundings… But only on the US-facing side.
Are there any other requirements?
It goes without saying, it should take some effort to breach or scale Trump’s wall. It should be impossible to scale the wall without assistance, while it should also deter the use of aids that make it easier to climb. Any fixtures, such as screws or notches, should be on the US-facing side of the wall.
Trump hopes to make Mexico pay for the $33 billion wall. However, Mexico’s Enrique Pena Nieto has yet to give in to these demands. It seems that the United States are preparing for a scenario in which they have to front the cost. Contractors were told that designs must be reasonably cheap to construct, maintain and repair.