Unfinished Border Walls Funnel Migrants into South Texas Neighborhoods

The Mexican Border by EdmondMeinfelder is licensed under CC BY 2.0

The Biden Administration’s pause on border wall construction now spans more than 100 days past the deadline for federal agencies to resume, modify, or terminate the projects. Thus far, only flood levee repairs and a reallocation of Department of Defense funding have occurred.


In La Joya, Texas, a consistent stream of migrants surrendering to the Border Patrol is a daily event. The border wall project there is currently paused and a gap along Military Road near the Rio Grande River funnels traffic right into the heart of the small, Starr County town. Migrants surrendering by the hundreds keep Border Patrol agents busy providing humanitarian assistance to family units and unaccompanied minors.

Single adults run through the city streets to escape an almost certain return to Mexico under an emergency Centers for Disease Control and Prevention COVID-19 authority. Residents there are frustrated by the influx of migrants in their community which is at a 20-year high.


Apolonio “Polo” Ramon, a lifetime resident, frequents a park in the town to “get some air” and film the migrant foot traffic in the immediate area. He says it has not been this busy in years.

The Mexican Border by EdmondMeinfelder is licensed under CC BY 2.0