Key commercial border crossing in Texas ready to double in size


Mahoney/Freightwaves

Since it opened in 1994, the Pharr-Reynosa International Bridge has been one of the busiest commercial ports of entry on the U.S.-Mexico border. The city of Pharr, which operates the bridge, has reshaped itself over the decades from a small, dusty agricultural community into a booming border trade hub.

Trade at the South Texas border port totaled a record $42 billion in 2021 — a number that could skyrocket in the near future, as the city has been working on a project to build a second commercial bridge alongside the existing one.

“We are expanding because it’s a need, the demand is there,” Luis Bazán, director of the Pharr-Reynosa International Bridge, told FreightWaves. “Even through the pandemic, crossings skyrocketed in Pharr. We’re at 26% trade growth year-over-year [from 2020 to 2021], combined imports and exports — that is a telltale sign that good things are coming, production is booming.”

The bridge expansion project is a joint U.S.-Mexico venture. The cost of the U.S. side of the second span, which is being funded by the city, will be around $45 million and is 1.5 miles long. It will connect with another 1.5-mile portion of the bridge that Mexico is building at roughly the same cost south of the border.

In conjunction with the existing bridge at Pharr, the second bridge will create the Rio Grande Valley’s largest international cargo crossing with Mexico once completed. Land has already been cleared and Pharr officials are ready to begin construction once all hurdles have been cleared. No timetable has been set yet.The bridge expansion project is a joint U.S.-Mexico venture. The cost of the U.S. side of the second span, which is being funded by the city, will be around $45 million and is 1.5 miles long. It will connect with another 1.5-mile portion of the bridge that Mexico is building at roughly the same cost south of the border.

I have to smile when I bump into a tale like this. Traffic management, logistics, is how I earned my living for a few decades and more. I really enjoyed the work. A core component in the economics of a region, an industry, a critical category within commerce.

The problems of rapid economic growth that turn a small town like Pharr into a boomtown – are good problems. Doesn’t always make them easy to resolve.

NEWSWEEK R&D Team of the Year = Hyundai Motor Group

Hyundai Motor Group’s engineering team developed the company’s new Electric Global Modular Platform (E-GMP), which underpins a new generation of vehicles aimed at democratizing an electrified future. It earns its creators Newsweek’s Auto Disruptors Research and Development Team of the Year Award…

“Over the past few years, humanity has gone through major changes,” Fayez Abdul Rahman, senior vice president of Hyundai’s Vehicle Architecture Development Center, tells Newsweek. “As a result, having mobility that provides a smart living space where we can safely and comfortably spend time has become more highly valued.” That includes features like a movable console and vehicle-to-load charging, which allows the car to provide electricity for other devices for uses like car camping and remote office work…

According to Rahman, E-GMP has also improved vehicle dynamics. “We took advantage of the EV’s structure to enable more stable and comfortable driving by lowering the center of gravity,” Rahman says.

Going forward, Hyundai expects the E-GMP platform to be used in 23 battery-electric vehicles by 2025 ranging across the Kia, Hyundai and Genesis branded lineups. Currently, the Kia EV6 and Hyundai Ioniq 5 ride on the architecture. Vehicles built on the platform will be capable of getting up to 310 miles of all-electric range.

Plenty of standalone articles online about the individuals guiding this project inside Hyundai. Next to nothing about the technology solutions. That will appear in coming months as Hyundai begins the rollout of their new technology. I just wanted to give y’all an early peek at what’s coming. This sort of platform standardization helps reduce costs (and hopefully price at the dealership). A lot easier with EV platforms.