Los Angeles Times

Trump's border wall through the eyes of an architecture critic

SAN DIEGO - We were driving east out of Otay Mesa when my phone buzzed with a text message from T-Mobile. "Welcome to Mexico!" it read. I slid the phone back into my pocket. The wide street we were on, Via de la Amistad, soon turned into a dirt road. The SUV I was riding in, with a pair of officers from U.S. Customs and Border Protection, bumped along for another five minutes or so before we pulled into a long, open field.

We hadn't actually driven into Mexican territory, as I far I knew. Yet my phone's confusion seemed to mirror my own. Lined up in the middle of the expanse of dirt where we'd stopped, now visible in a perfect row, were eight prototypes of the border wall that President Donald Trump has promised to build between the United States and Mexico.

I'd been working for a few days to arrange a visit to the prototypes, which are being tested and evaluated by the federal government. They were designed and fabricated by six firms - not

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