As U.S. Customs and Border Protection sorts through the proposals it has received from contractors interested in building a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border, it was not clear whether any Wisconsin firms have thrown their hats into the ring.
Proposals were due this week to build a prototype showing what a wall along the border might actually look like. According to the federal agency, the response has been strong to a request for proposals it issued earlier this spring seeking out contractors who were interested in working on the project.
The Customs and Border Protection’s initial RFP, issued in February, drew interest from more than 700 vendors, according to a posting on the Federal Business Opportunities website.
Since then, the department has issued two separate RFPs — one concerning designs for a concrete wall, and another concerning other design types. More than 200 firms have expressed an interest in each of the RFPs.
Brownsville-based Michels Corp. was among the vendors initially listed as being interested in the RFPs for both the concrete and alternative designs. Also on the list were the Schofield-based concrete contractor Norcon Corp. and the Green Bay-based metal fabricator Folkman Inc.
A Michels Corp. official on Friday declined to comment on whether the firm ended up submitting a proposal. Meanwhile, an official with Norcon said the company had no intention of submitting a proposal and was simply following the RFPs out of general interest.
A representative of Folkman Inc. could not be immediately reached for comment on Friday.
CNN Money reports that some of the design submissions so far have called for the construction of a “smart wall” filled with fiber-optic cables, a structure a resembling medieval castle or, in place of a physical barrier, an elevated high-speed “hyperloop” — a conceptual type of transportation system in which pod-like vehicles would be propelled through tubes at extremely high speeds.