We have explored the Gateway International Bridge (AKA the “New Bridge”) and the iconic Puerta México into Matamoros and now we will explore the main U.S. port of entry into Brownsville: the Gateway Port of Entry. Situated north of the Gateway Bridge (symbolic for demonstrating the transborder ties between the U.S. and Mexico), the Brownsville Gateway Port of Entry could also be considered symbolic due to its long history. If the Puerta México welcomes us to northeastern Mexico, is the Gateway Port of Entry similarly welcoming into South Texas?
This vehicular and pedestrian crossing along the Gateway Bridge is the busiest border crossing between the sister communities of Brownsville and Matamoros. The international border is seen in the center of the image (note how the sidewalk surface changes, marking the dividing point between Mexico and the U.S.)
The Gateway International Bridge/Puente Internacional Matamoros (o more affectionately, the “puente nuevo”) is a symbolic and literal tie between Mexico and the United States through the border communities of Matamoros, Tamaulipas and Brownsville, Texas. In addition to appreciating the bridge’s function and symbolic value it is worth taking into consideration the sets of buildings on opposite ends of this Rio Grande border crossing, particularly in the southbound direction towards Matamoros. Just a few steps in Mexico at the foot of the bridge is one of the great architectural public buildings on Mexico’s northern border – the Puerta México or Mexico Gateway. Like the Gateway Bridge, the Puerta México has deep and tremendous historic value and symbolism.
U.S.-Mexican, Latino, and Border Historian