EL PASO, Texas (Border Report) — President Donald Trump has ordered members of his administration to move forward with painting the border wall black and seek out cost estimates, The Washington Post reported last week.

This is not the first time the president has entertained the idea of painting the wall black, which according to the Post, could add $500 million to the cost of the border wall project.

The Post obtained from federal contracting officials cost estimates that show costs ranging from $500 million for two coats of acrylic paint to more than $3 billion for a “premium ‘powder coating’ on the structure’s 30-foot steel bollards.”

Trump in the past has told aides that painting the wall black would not only make it hot to the touch and discourage would-be border crossers from scaling the wall, but the black wall would also appear more intimidating, the Post reported. Trump revisited the idea after seeing a black countertop momentarily burn some of his golfing partners who were ordering hot dogs at one of his golf clubs.

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Construction of the border wall along the Southwest border continues despite outcry from lawmakers and advocates who say work should stop during the coronavirus pandemic.

On May 7, Border Report spotted trucks hauling sections of border wall from San Diego to a construction site in Otay Mesa.

In April, about a dozen trailers meant to house border-wall crews popped up in Columbus, N.M. However, the trailers were hauled away after resident activists, residents and some public officials complained of a heightened risk of COVID-19 spread. Residents, many of whom claimed a minor victory, told Border Report they believed the trailers were moved to an area near the New Mexico-Arizona border.

As of April 24, the Associated Press reported, the administration has completed 170 miles of border wall, and another 180 miles or so are under construction. The administration had promised to build 450 miles by the end of the year.

On Friday night, U.S. Customs and border protection announced that a $275 million contract has been awarded to an Alabama company to start construction of a 14-mile border wall in Laredo, Texas.

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