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McALLEN, TX-The need to expand has prompted the construction launch for a Department of Homeland Security customs and border patrol facility. The two-building complex, totaling 78,000 sf, will cost $15 million to $18 million to build.

Bruce Jackson, partner with Austin-based TAG International LLP, says the 48-acre project at 3000 W. Military Highway will replace and consolidate operations at 4201 W. Military Highway and 2301 S. Main St., both in McAllen He says the buildings should be completed by year’s end or at early 2009. Occupancy is planned for first quarter 2009.

TAG designed the project. Its developers are Live Oak-Gottesman Group, also from Austin, and Washington, DC-based FD Partners, which are part of a design-build team that includes Harvey-Cleary Builders of Austin. Frost National Bank of San Antonio provided construction financing.

TAG is in the midst of seeking LEED certification for the customs and border patrol project. The environmentally friendly measures target energy efficiency, water usage, storm water management, HVAC systems with enhanced refrigerants and recycled building materials.

Jackson tells GlobeSt.com that the two-building complex isn’t too different in design from many other buildings, but it does have unusual operational requirements that were taken into consideration. “This will contain an office building as well as a processing facility for detainees,” he adds. The US isn’t planning to use all 48 acres right now, but the extra space does allow for future expansion, he says.

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