The West Rail Bypass Bridge that connects the Mexican city of Matamoros with Brownsville, Texas, will be opened to traffic in the next couple of months, according to Mexico’s transport and communications ministry.
Billed as the first international railroad linking Mexico with the United States, the rail crossing is aimed at easing the movement of people and cargo between the North American countries.
Moreover, the bridge should move rail traffic currently flowing through the downtown area of the two cities to the outskirts of the metropolitan area, relieving congestion, preventing accidents and reducing noise and air pollution.
“With more than one billion dollars in goods and services crossing the U.S.-Mexico border every day, rail crossings like this one are critical to economic growth and opportunity on both sides of our border,” said U.S. Ambassador Anthony Wayne.
Mexico and the United States have invested US$74.8 million and $100 million respectively in the project, which also includes the construction of railway yards and terminal buildings as well as an overpass for cars.
Experts say the railroad will create jobs and stimulate the manufacturing industry on both sides of the border, reducing the number of Mexican job seekers crossing into the United States.
In January last year, officials from both the countries also discussed a plan to build a high-speed railway between San Antonio, Texas, and Monterrey, Mexico. But there have been no reports about the progress of this plan.
In the meantime, Mexico intends to construct a high-speed railway linking Mexico City with Querétaro as part of its plan to develop an industrial corridor.