Test results: Additional lanes at San Ysidro border significantly reduce wait times
By Javier Fernandez
The U.S. General Services Administration recently opened all 25 northbound lanes at the San Ysidro Land Port of Entry (LPOE) for a weekend test period. Previously, the port operated with 17 northbound lanes into the U.S. as eight lanes were closed to accommodate ongoing construction work and the installation of new inspection booths. As the busiest land border crossing in the Western Hemisphere, San Ysidro LPOE northbound wait times can often exceed 180 minutes during peak commute hours. However, during the test period when all lanes were available, the average wait time was significantly reduced to 45 minutes. Even more improved were SENTRI and Ready Lanes with wait times as low as 15 minutes.
“The weekend test period was extremely successful and served as a precursor to how traffic will be greatly improved when construction is complete on the northbound lanes,” said Scott Shin, Project Manager for the San Ysidro LPOE expansion and realignment project. “The reduced northbound wait times we observed in general vehicle, SENTRI, and Ready Lanes represented a significant functional and operational improvement over the port’s previous lane configuration.”
In collaboration with its binational partners, GSA also opened two northbound new feeder lanes near the former Mexican inspection station, Puerta Mexico. These new lanes connected to Mexico’s 5 additional lanes and helped increase overall queuing capacity within the port by 300 cars. The binational effort had a noticeable impact and reduced border crossing-related traffic in the city of Tijuana.
The lane improvement and new double-stacked booths installed at the San Ysidro LPOE are part of a larger expansion and realignment project. Once complete, the port will have 34 vehicle lanes and 63 booths.
(Periodic lane closures to accommodate canopy installation will continue through fall 2014.)
Traci Madison contributed to this report.