President Donald Trump said this month that his promised border wall is being designed. Leaked details of a draft plan envision fencing and walls to extend more than 1,200 miles along the Mexican border by the end of 2020, with a price tag beyond $21 billion. While exact details of Trump’s wall remain hazy, we do know a lot about the current border fence, because at Reveal from The Center for Investigative Reporting, we’ve been collecting and analyzing data on it for years.
There are 700 miles of fence along the U.S.-Mexico border. In some high-traffic spots, there are two or three layers of fence in one area, leaving somewhere between 652 and 690 miles of fence that front the actual border. Often, the fence is not built on the border itself, but inside the United States by anywhere from a few feet to up to a mile.