When Donald Trump first said he was going to build a wall and make Mexico pay for it, there weren’t a whole lot of details. But in the past few years a number of designers, including the president himself, have decided to fill in the blanks. Here are five of the strangest ideas for the border wall along the Texas-Mexico border.
5. A monorail
National Consulting Service, a California-based firm, proposed a wall with a monorail on top. Yes, like the monorail at Disneyland. NCS argued that its plan would both enhance national security and revitalize cities along the border. The wall would use “voice analysis technology” to monitor the emotional state of riders and assist law enforcement, according to the San Diego Tribune. The proposal did not address how to deal with criminals on the monorail who simply kept silent.
This idea comes from none other than the Trump administration itself, although it’s technically not a wall. Last year Trump shared a photo on Twitter of a “steel slat barrier.” But that’s not all, the slats would have sharp spikes on top. It looks like what you would get if you asked Vlad the Impaler to secure the border. Of course, the president didn’t stop there and has recently updated the idea. According to Border Wars: Inside Trump’s Assault on Immigration, a book by two New York Times journalists, Trump wanted his wall to have spikes and be electrified
3. The Pink Prison/Mall
In response to the president’s desire for the wall to be beautiful, a group of interns at the Mexican firm Estudio 3.14 designed a massive pink wall. The color choice was inspired by the works of Mexican architect Luis Barragán. The wall wouldn’t just be a wall, it would also have a prison capable of holding up to 11 million people and a shopping mall for Americans. This likely would have taken the number one spot if it weren’t for the fact that it’s not a serious proposal but rather an attempt to demonstrate the “gorgeous perversity” of Trump’s wall. The same cannot be said about the next two walls on the list.
According to Border Wars, the president asked his advisors about building a moat filled with alligators and/or snakes. Apparently he was serious enough that aides actually looked into how much this Bond villain-worthy barrier would cost. According to The Economist, alligators would be more practical than snakes since a large number of them are already bred on alligator farms. Of course, building the moat would be quite costly and water would need to constantly be pumped in to counter evaporation in the hot desert.
1. Nuclear Waste
Pittsburgh-based contractor Clayton Industries proposed something that looked like the final level of an old video game. A layered design, the first barrier is a simple chain link. But what is behind the fence is what lands this at the top of the list: a 100-foot deep trench filled with nuclear waste. That’s right, nuclear waste. Behind the trench were railroad tracks and an electrified 30 foot wall powered by a “waste to energy platform.” According to the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, Chris Clayton, president of Clayton Industries, has made similar outlandish proposals to local governments before. That indicates that either this was a serious attempt to win a contract from the Trump administration or Clayton is very dedicated to trolling.
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