Southern Border of the United States


National Border Crossing


2,000 miles long



Key Staff

Eric McNevin, Jose Herrasti

Key Publications

"A Fence With More Beauty, Fewer Barbs", New York Times, June 18, 2006

A concept strategy for the re?design of the US?Mexican border at the request of the New York Times. The Foreign Affairs editor asked us to suggest a border strategy that would alleviate the current social and political tensions. What should the border look like?

The project connects a landscape design concept with the policy issues that divide Mexico and the United States. In a broader sense the proposal is a speculation on whether that sort of policy question is a legitimate subject for architecture. Other than the predictable walls and fences, is there a form language for national border security. What are the connotations of a “walled” versus an “open” border. What’s shared between two nations, and what should remain discrete?

The solution here involves the construction of a 2,000 mile long earth mound, a multi?cultural promenade on raised earth, raised on the border itself, with traffic over the border directed through a series of Siqueiros’ murals on the walls of the tunnels to be excavated under the border/mound. Vertical glass tubes, a “glass forest”, are positioned on the mounds, bringing light to the under border tunnels, and orchestrating the parallel-to-the-border walk along the mound. This is the architecture of open borders and cultural exchange, forgoing the conventional manifestations of nation-to-nation insecurity.