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Border Closure Prompts San Ysidro Festival

August 17, 2017

By Ana Gomez Salcido

The San Ysidro Port of Entry will close its vehicular exit to Tijuana from 3 a.m. on Saturday, September 23 through Monday, September 25 at noon. During this time, travelers are invited to cross the border on foot through San Ysidro – whether northbound or southbound –for PedFest, a cultural and musical festival.

The closure is expected to increase pedestrian traffic through the weekend. Travelers in San Ysidro can not only expect great deals on cell phone accessories and services, bargain clothing, legal, immigration and accounting services, and money exchange services, but also experience local musicians on the streets, live artists, food and free or reduced transportation to and around San Ysidro during PedFest 2017. More details about the weekend festivities will be released as we get closer to the date.

The San Ysidro Chamber of Commerce is organizing the event as an idea to keep business going in the border area through the closure. And at the same time, federal authorities are also encouraging travelers to cross on foot instead of by car, to avoid long border wait times at the Otay Mesa Port of Entry, which is the second option for crossing the U.S.-Mexico border from San Diego to Tijuana by vehicle.

The 57-hour closure of the San Ysidro Port of Entry’s southbound lanes is part of an expansion project led by the U.S. General Services Administration (GSA). The closure was announced during a forum in July to advise travelers as well as the business community of this part of the $741 million project.

Federal authorities confirmed that all pedestrian facilities in San Ysidro will remain open during the 57-hour construction period, as well as the northbound vehicular lanes at the San Ysidro Port of Entry.

Also, San Ysidro business leaders got together early this month with a big turnout to discuss PedFest 2017 and road closure details with Caltrans and MTS to look for ways to make sure vehicles can get to San Ysidro businesses during the 57-hour closure. GSA authorities announced that all southbound lanes of I-5 and I-805 will be closed to traffic south of the SR-905 during the 57-hour closure.

San Ysidro business owners want to remind the public that their stores will remain open during the 57-hour closure and that there are going to be special offers as part of the PedFest 2017 festivities.

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