The hardening U.S.-Mexico border of the 2010s has been increasingly defined by walls and division, but symbolic bridges continue to tie the two countries’ people together. One such recent link is the newest bridge on the U.S.-Mexican border, the Cross Border Xpress (CBX) linking the Tijuana International Airport (TIJ) in Mexico with a passenger check-in terminal in San Diego, California, making TIJ the only airport in the world with terminals in two different countries. Open since 2015, the CBX (aka, “La Puerta de las Californias”) symbolizes the two countries’ ability (and inability) to cooperate. Grab onto your luggage as we rush across the CBX’s history to our flight in Tijuana!
For many, the U.S.-Mexico border summons images of barrier walls and binational border towns set in arid desert landscapes. However, on January 2, 2019, snow blanketed the international boundary between Nogales, Arizona, USA, and Heroica Nogales, Sonora, Mexico. For a few hours the borderlands were a winter wonderland.
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.)
U.S.-Mexican, Latino, and Border Historian