Trump administration takes major step toward building border wall

President Donald Trump made a promise during his speech at the Conservative Political Action Conference on Friday.

"We're going to build a wall," Trump said. "Don't worry about it. We're building the wall; we're building the wall. In fact, it's going to start soon, way ahead of schedule."

And not long after, U.S. Customs and Border Protection released a notification that it will soon take submissions for "prototype wall structures."

It's the first tangible step toward meeting Trump's executive order on border security that he signed in January. Trump has said the barrier would run for 1,000 miles along the nearly 2,000-mile border with Mexico. Some sort of barrier already runs some 700 miles along the border.

Stunning US border control stations:

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Stunning US border control stations
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Stunning US border control stations
The Warroad Port of Entry designed by Julie Snow Architects

Located in Minnesota on the Canadian border, the Warroad Port of Entry services approximately 157,000 cars, buses, and trucks annually. A rich, dark cedar covers the facade of the building, which was constructed in 2012.

(Photo by Julie Snow Architects/Paul Crosby/GSA)

The Warroad Port of Entry designed by Julie Snow Architects

The wood continues in the interior. Large windows in the lobby and office area give a sense of openness and transparency.

(Photo by Julie Snow Architects/Paul Crosby/GSA)

The Warroad Port of Entry designed by Julie Snow Architects

"You need to be cognizant of officers' hyper-awareness, but you also have to provide them with a haven," the station's leading architect, Julie Snow, told the General Services Administration.

(Photo by Julie Snow Architects/Paul Crosby/GSA)

Source: GSA

The Canadian Plaza at the Peace Bridge designed by NORR Limited

The neo-futuristic Canadian Plaza at the Peace Bridge, located in Fort Erie, has a bridge that links Buffalo, New York and Ontario, Canada.

(Photo via NORR Limited/Open Buildings)

The Canadian Plaza at the Peace Bridge designed by NORR Limited

According to the architects, the design was inspired by the area's native long house shelters and canoes, one of the earliest types of transportation used to cross the Niagara River.

(Photo via NORR Limited/Open Buildings)

Source: Architizer

The Canadian Plaza at the Peace Bridge designed by NORR Limited

Completed in 2007, the two-story station on the Canadian side features a central skylight that brings in natural light.

(Photo via NORR Limited/Open Buildings)

The Mariposa Land Port of Entry designed by Jones Studio.

In Arizona, the Mariposa Land Port of Entry is "a study in balancing security with a dignified welcome ... and strives to be a cultural connection — rather than a division," the architects wrote in a statement.

(Photo via Jones Studio/Facebook)

Source: Jones Studio

The Mariposa Land Port of Entry designed by Jones Studio.

The designers made a conscious effort to have the open-layout station appear humane and welcoming.

(Photo via Jones Studio/Facebook)

Source: Jones Studio

The Mariposa Land Port of Entry designed by Jones Studio.

Constructed in 2014, the 216,000-square-foot port features a processing station for vehicles and pedestrians, a lush garden, and a system that allows it to collect and recycle rainwater.

(Photo via Jones Studio/Facebook)

Source: Jones Studio

The Murrieta Border Patrol Station designed by Garrison Architects

In California, the Murrieta Border Patrol Station was designed to blend in with the arid desert landscape. Constructed in 2004, the building's brick facade is a pale, sand-like brown.

The fence around the entrance for border agents is made of the same steel as the US-Mexico border fence. To access the building, they must walk through the fence "and experience it as a threshold, a reminder of the permeability of borders," the architects wrote.

Source: Garrison Architects

(Photo by Garrison Architects/GSA)

The Murrieta Border Patrol Station designed by Garrison Architects

Inside, the building prioritizes ventilation and natural light to create a comfortable environment. The walls are painted bright yellow.

(Photo by Garrison Architects/GSA)

The Cross Border Xpress designed by Legoretta

Built in 2015, the Cross Border Xpress connects San Diego, California with the Tijuana International Airport in Mexico. The architects used bright shades of orange and purple as an homage to the late Mexican architect Ricardo Legoretta, who was known for his vivid pops of color.

(Photo via Legoretta)

The Cross Border Xpress designed by Legoretta

The design focuses on making travel between Mexico and the US faster and easier, the designers told Business Insider. It is "a very much needed bridge in this new era of co-existence between the two nations," the firm wrote.

(Photo via Legoretta)

The San Ysidro Port of Entry designed by The Miller Hull Partnership

California's San Ysidro Port of Entry is the busiest land border crossing in the Western Hemisphere. An expansion of it, set to open in 2019, is "designed to be the port of the future," according to the GSA.

(Photo via The Miller Hull Partnership/GSA)

Source: GSA

The San Ysidro Port of Entry designed by The Miller Hull Partnership

The $735 million project will add 38 additional vehicle inspection booths, and ease traffic at the port.

(Photo via The Miller Hull Partnership/GSA)

Source: GSA

The San Ysidro Port of Entry designed by The Miller Hull Partnership

Like many recently constructed stations, the design shows that border stations don't need to appear hostile. Instead, they present an opportunity for the US to invest in stations that are both beautiful and secure.

(Photo via The Miller Hull Partnership/GSA)

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SEE MORE: Here's How Much Taxpayers Will Pay For Trump's Border Wall

Trump routinely calls his proposed border structure a "wall." But he has said before that some areas might be fenced instead.

He estimates it will cost $12 billion, but some have said a wall that's 1,000 miles long, 50 feet tall and 10 feet below ground could cost upwards of $38 billion to build.

The American people and American companies will foot the bill. Trump has said Mexico will pay the U.S. back, but Mexico's current president and two former presidents have said that's not going to happen.

RELATED: Country and state borders:

14 PHOTOS
Country and state borders
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Country and state borders

Virginia and Tennessee

The Virginia-Tennessee state line is marked between the double yellow line on State Street in downtown Bristol.

Netherlands and Belgium

Baarle-Nassau village, the Belgium/Netherlands border goes in the middle of the house.

United States and Canada

Nancy Rumery, Haskell Free Library Director straddles the U.S.- Canada border line which runs through the library's International Reading Room. The U.S. is to the right.

(Photo by Stan Grossfeld/The Boston Globe via Getty Images)

Spain and Portugal

The border between Spain and Portugal is clear because of the distinct difference in the road.

Norway and Sweden

Sign in Finnish, Swedish and Northern Sami by Snow Covered Road at Border of Norway and Finland, Klipisjarvi, Lapland, Finland.

Argentina and Brazil

Tourists view the Iguazu Falls from an observation platform at the Iguazu National Park near the southern Brazilian city of Foz do Iguacu June 21, 2014. Forming a border between Argentina and Brazil, the Iguazu Falls, South America's largest falls, attract more than 1 million visitors a year.

(REUTERS/Jorge Adorno)

Poland and Slovakia

Tatra Mountains is situated on the border between Poland and Slovakia and with 25 summits above 2500 meters, the Tatras is the highest range of the Carpathian Mountains chain. The state border of Slovakia and Poland runs along the main mountain ridge, starting with Laliove sedlo and leaving the High Tatras at Rysy peak, 2499 m. Seen from far left - Kasprowy Wierch Peak, 1,987 m, with station. Kasprowy Wierch Peak also delineates the border between Poland and the Slovak Republic. Swinica Peak, 2,301 m, in the center and the Slovak Valley of Valentkova Dolina on the right.

(Jadwiga Figula via Getty Images)

United States and Mexico

'The new steel beam border fence overlooks Nogales, Mexico. Since this section of new 18 foot tall fence has been completed in 2011, officials have cut the number of aliens entering the United States at this particular location drastically. However, only 685 miles of the 2,100 miles of common border between Mexico and the US have been fenced, and much of that fence is useless barbed wire or chain link. One mile of this new fencing costs from $1 million to $3 million dollars, and Arizona is using prison labor to cut down on costs. Fences will not totally deter illegal immigration - Nogales, for instance, is reputed to have more underground tunnels for smuggling people and drugs in the US than any other location along the border.'

(chapin31 via Getty Images)

Spain and United Kingdom

Pedestrians cross the tarmac at Gibraltar International Airport in front of the Rock near the border with Spain in the British overseas territory of Gibraltar, historically claimed by Spain, June 24, 2016, after Britain voted to leave the European Union in the EU BREXIT referendum.

(REUTERS/Jon Nazca)

Pakistan and India

A huge crowd of Pakistani and Indian residents gather to watch the Pakistani and Indian border security forces perform their daily flag lowering ceremonies at the Wagah border post between the rival nations July 12, 2001. More than half a century after the hasty partition of the Asian subcontinent by departing British colonialists, relations between India and Pakistan are still dogged by hatred, suspicion and misunderstanding. Musharraf is due to visit India from July 14-16 for summit talks with Indian Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee will focus the dispute territory of the Himayan region of Kashmir. 

(Reuters)

Chile and Argentina

Monument to Christ the Redeemer of the Andes, on the mountain pass marking the border between Chile and Argentina, Cumbre or Uspallata pass, Chile and Argentina.

(Photo by DeAgostini/Getty Images)

Panama and Costa Rica

Car crossing railway track bridge at Costa Rica - Panama border.

(Kryssia Campos via Getty Images)

China and Nepal

Mount Everest - also called Qomolangma Peak, Mount Sagarmatha, Chajamlungma (Limbu), Zhumulangma Peak or Mount Chomolungma - is the highest mountain on Earth, and the highest point on the Earth's continental crust, as measured by the height above sea level of its summit, 8,848 metres (29,029 ft). The mountain, which is part of the Himalaya range in Asia, is located on the border between Sagarmatha Zone, Nepal, and Tibet, China.

(hadynyah via Getty Images)

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