SAN DIEGO (Border Report) — As you walk to Ped West, one of two pedestrian crossings at the San Ysidro Port of Entry, you’ll notice small signs warning people the facility is closed.
These signs have been up since April 2020 when U.S. Customs and Border Protection decided to shut down Ped West as the coronavirus pandemic unfolded.
When open, Ped West is used by about 25,000 border commuters per day.
It offers an alternative to the other pedestrian crossing on the east side of San Ysidro Port of Entry where waits can take hours.
One reason Ped West has not opened is that a migrant camp sprung up about a year ago at the entry and exit point to the facility on the Tijuana side of the border.
Now that it’s gone, there is hope Ped West will reopen soon, but so far, there is no indication from CBP to start operations once again.
“A lot of people would be so much happier if they do have both sides of the border, I believe they should have both sides open not just one,” said border commuter Yolanda, who was on her way to the dentist in Mexico.
She and others who spoke to Border Report said they would like Ped West to reopen as it provides a faster alternative when crossing the border on foot.
“I think it should open because we pay tax money to have that facility and it’s not open,” said Lucy. “I think it’s a waste of money and plus we cross every day and it’s not only me it’s thousands of people walking back and forth.”
For now, a CBP spokesperson said pedestrians must continue using the crossing on the east side.
“Opening and staffing just PedEast will allow us to open more pedestrian booths at peak times, including using the lanes dedicated for bus passengers to keep wait times manageable,” said the spokesperson. “Regarding the PedWest facility at San Ysidro, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) will continue to assess staffing levels to determine when we are able to resume normal travel safely and sustainably, and will be sure to announce any changes to hours of operation prior to the new hours being put into effect.