SAN DIEGO (Border Report) — As a way to ease traffic on Vía Rápida Oriente, the main road leading into the San Ysidro Port of Entry on the Mexico side, Tijuana city engineers have ordered a study to see if additional traffic lanes can be built on the river channel next to the border crossing.

The study was discussed during a governmental news conference on Thursday in the city of Mexicali, Baja California’s capital.

“This could help add lanes for people crossing into the U.S.,” said Arturo Espinoza Jaramillo, Baja’s Secretary of Infrastructure and Urban Development. “We need to figure out if the canal might work and whether we can use it since it’s federal land.”

Espinoza Jaramillo said it’s an idea worth exploring, though it would be costly.

“It’s a pretty big investment because it would require the raising of several bridges along the river,” he said.

In June of last year, Baja Gov. Marina del Pilar Ávila Olmeda first brought up the idea of utilizing the channel to help ease traffic congestion around the port of entry.

After the study is conducted and if there is merit to the idea, additional traffic lanes would be built on the upper part of the canal, on its eastern bank and not in the area where the water flows into the U.S., according to Tijuana traffic engineers.

“We don’t have many options to ease congestion; It’s worth a look,” Espinoza Jaramillo said.