Ever since last year's December 3 mandate, all cargo entering the U.S. must be screened for explosives. As a result, officials have been working to improve both supply chain security and efficiency.
Recently, they moved closer to this goal by constructing a dual-customs hanger at the Brownsville South Padre Island International Airport in Brownsville, Texas.
Brownsville is unique among most U.S. cities, in that it is adjacent to Matamoros, Mexico. In addition to sharing a common heritage and culture, the two cities have long been trading partners.
"These two communities have grown together for the last 400 years, so they're united by family, education, business, culture, in all ways," Michael Jones, business development manager at the Brownsville airport, told Air Cargo World.
The planned 20,000 square foot hanger will cost $2.4 million and is expected to open in October, according to the news source. As the only such hanger in a U.S. airport, it will greatly facilitate the process of moving cargo across the boarder.
Jones explained that at other airports in the U.S. and Mexico, cargo takes longer to clear customs since it must do so in the country where it is being delivered.
"If you save a day or two days, this makes a huge difference," he added. "That's the tremendous advantage to dual customs."
In addition to boosting efficiency, the dual-customs hanger will ease the process of air cargo screening. Since cargo is expected to grow rapidly in Brownsville, customs officials will be able to focus their efforts there.
In fact, Brown told the news source that air cargo volume is expected to double in the first year, and continue to grow thereafter.