The Pharr-Reynosa International Bridge, the primary port of entry for fresh produce into the Rio Grande Valley, wants to help protect the integrity of produce stopped for inspection.
The bridge put out for bids to improve its climate-controlled inspection facilities in late October, hoping to have those facilities up and running by spring.
Jimmy Garza, director of operations of Bebo Distributing Inc., Pharr, and a City of Pharr commissioner who sits on the bridge’s board, said the improvements will help maintain the cold chain.
Adding the climate-controlled docks will help Pharr draw even more shipments, especially in the summer, Garza said.
“It’s a huge plus, especially in the summertime,” he said.
“This is a major value-added feature for our port of entry and will set us apart.”
Bridge director Jesse Medina said the $400,000 improvements will seal the three inspection docks to provide a more solid cold chain.
“We’re making that inspection process better by redesigning our current facility so the process can be made smoother and more efficient,” he said.
“We’ll be ready in the spring, God willing.”
The improvements to inspection facilities are in conjunction with a construction project on the northbound lanes through the bridge that should allow trucks to pass more quickly.
Bridge authorities plan to evaluate whether more cold inspection facilities are necessary once the lane improvements are complete.