San Ysidro Land Port of Entry

Hensel Phelps Construction Company

Work Performed
Hazardous Materials Abatement
Salvaging & Recycling
Structural Demolition

San Ysidro Land Port of Entry

The San Ysidro Land Port of Entry (SYLPOE) is the busiest land port in the world located on the Mexico-United States Border. The existing, outdated 30-year-old 24/7 facility can no longer support, nor enforce the missions of the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) operations. The Port currently processes an average of 50,000 northbound vehicles and 25,000 northbound pedestrians per day. The San Diego Association of Governments (SANDAG)
6 predicts an increase in vehicle traffic at San Ysidro of up to 70% by the year 2030. SANDAG’s recent study indicates substantial economic impacts of $8.4 billion in lost revenue to the region resulting from increased wait times at the border. Given the delays at current traffic volumes, capacity of the Port must be increased to accommodate regional growth. (reference http://hp To make way for the new construction, AMG was contracted to “turnkey” the building demolition, asbestos remediation, and earthwork. Phase 1b consists of over 100,000 sq. ft. of existing building demolition and handling close to 80,000 cubic yards of soil for earthwork and grading operations over a three year period. As though working at the busiest land crossing in the world and not disturbing the 24/7 operation wasn’t hard enough. AMG had the challenging and difficult task of deconstructing & dismantling the Administration Building, which serves as the heart of the entire project.

The Administration Building is a 2-Story 45,000 sq. ft. structural steel building standing 50 feet off the ground, which serves as the Port’s main building of operation. This building has an 18 foot clearance from the ground floor and allows 50,000 cars per day to cross from Mexico into the United States. AMG’s challenge was to dismantle this enormous building while 50,000 cars pass underneath it, while simultaneously not disrupting the Port’s 24/7 operation. For this, AMG erected a tower crane to dismantle the steel structure and roof section of this building. AMG crews were committed to working multiple shifts around the clock using torches, chop saws, skidsteers, and scissor lifts to remove the 45,000 sq. ft. of metal pandeck and roofing material. To prevent any debris from falling 50′ onto oncoming traffic below, AMG installed an engineered, suspended “dancefloor” scaffolding system. With the tower crane installed, hundreds of 40 cy dumpsters were craned onto the 2nd floor to be loaded with roofing and construction debris and lowered to the ground floor to be hauled off to landfills and recycling plants. The careful dismantling and deconstruction of removing the structural steel roof system finished in an impressive six weeks period.

With the first difficult part of the demolition done, the next challenge was for AMG to demolish the existing 2nd floor steel structure and concrete pandeck standing 27′ tall over the traffic of 50,000 cars per day. For this, AMG used multiple hydraulic excavators equipped with hydraulic shear and shank attachments, 275-ton hydraulic cranes, torching equipment, and boom lifts to crane and dismantle the 45,000 sq ft steel structure while keeping the Port operational 24/7 and allowing for traffic to pass underneath during demolition operations. After working a grueling eight weeks around the clock and thousands of man hours later, AMG successfully dismantled the 2nd floor of this Administration Building with no worker injuries, no damage caused to the 50,000 cars passing below each day, or any delays to the 24/7 Port’s operation. The pictures below depict the dismantling and deconstruction of the Administration Building along with other portions of Phase 1B over the three year mult-phased $300 million dollar project. (Photos by