Wednesday, February 9, 2011
Border Field State Park, also known as Friendship Park, has long been a nexus for cross-border relations. But security concerns forced its closing.
SAN DIEGO Hard against the Mexican border and the sea, Border Field State Park has been a cross-border gathering place in recent years.
The small park adjacent to the Tijuana Estuary, has a rich history.
In the late 1800's, a monument was erected between the neighboring countries marking the precise border. Then, in 1971, First Lady Pat Nixon designated the site as Parque de la Amistad, or Friendship Park. But the attacks of Sept. 11th, 2001, brought an increase in security to the site, and ultimately the park's closing.
A much-awaited redesign of the park, anticipating its reopening, will be unveiled at a public hearing in Imperial Beach today. The event will feature a design by San Diego Architect Jim Brown and a different plan offered by the Border Patrol.
Brown's plan centers on a common area between the two countries, incorporating a bi-national garden and public seating where people from both sides of the border can mingle. However, a wall at the border would remain, with security provided by the Border Patrol.
The public unveiling will is this afternoon at 5:30, at the Marina Vista Community Center in Imperial Beach.