DONNA, Texas — A new holding center for unaccompanied kids and migrants is being built “as fast as they can” in the Rio Grande Valley as US Customs and Border Protection officials struggle to manage a flood of immigrants that’s left existing facilities well beyond capacity, The Post has learned. 

The temporary center is currently under construction in Donna on a 40-acre plot of land, adjacent to a tent city CBP opened in February for migrant children that’s been criticized as the same sort of “cages” President Biden vowed to never allow under his watch. 

“They’re building another one as fast as they can,” a CBP source told The Post on Monday.

“They clearly intend to do 24/7 construction,” the source went on, noting a series of light towers that have been set up on the land, which allows for nighttime construction. 

“Usually construction workers work during the day so that tells you the speed of which they’re trying to get this thing up.” 

Detainees in a Customs and Border Protection temporary overflow facility in Donna, Texas.
US Customs and Border Protection is constructing new holding facilities amid the influx of migrants.

The facility is expected to be “huge,” the official noted, and the plot of land is large enough for more than 35 football fields. 

The Post visited the site Saturday afternoon and saw large construction vehicles plowing through the land, moving lighting equipment and digging into the earth before a security guard told the reporter they needed to leave. The guard said the grounds were federal property and law enforcement would be called if they didn’t immediately leave. 

Early Monday, photos from inside the current UAC facility were leaked by Rep. Henry Cuellar (D-Texas) showing devastating, crowded conditions with hordes of young migrants sleeping on mats and huddled together in silver space blankets. 

The elected official, who didn’t take the photos, said the facility had “terrible conditions” for children and one pod within the tents, designed to hold 260 people, had 400 unaccompanied male kids. 

A view of a U.S. Customs and Border Patrol facility that houses minors in the border town of Donna.
The increased number of immigrants crossing the border has left existing facilities well beyond capacity.
David Butow/Redux for NY Post

The 185,000 square foot facility is surrounded by a black fence that makes it difficult to see what’s going on beyond the perimeter but at least a dozen tour busses, and multiple blue HVAC vehicles, were visible during The Post’s Saturday visit. 

A steady stream of CBP and US  Border Patrol vehicles were seen driving in and out of the facility. 

The Biden administration has been grappling with an immigration crisis on pace to be the worst in 20 years after they rolled back a series of strict policies set in place by former President Donald Trump.

Migrants crowd a room with walls of plastic sheeting at the U.S. Customs and Border Protection temporary processing center.
Migrant families are flooding the US border expecting Biden to help them.

Unaccompanied kids, families and single adults have flooded the border in recent months, some of which told The Post they expected Biden to help them and came because he was more welcoming to migrants than Trump

Between January and February, the number of migrants jumping the border increased by 28 percent, CBP data shows, and the number of migrants flooding the Rio Grande Valley, which is ground zero for the crisis, is set to double in March.

When asked for comment on the facility, CBP deferred to the US Department of Health and Human Services, which didn’t return The Post’s request.

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