NORTHBRIDGE (CBS) — A Massachusetts company could play a bigger role in national security if President-elect Donald Trump’s idea to build a wall along the Mexican border becomes a reality.
What started out as a lobster and crab trap business in the 1980s, Riverdale Mills in Northbridge has grown into a multi-application fencing company. But, their product is nothing like the typical chain-link fence. It’s made with thick steel wires that are welded close together, designed to be harder to scale and difficult to cut with a bolt cutter.
“It’s a very durable, long-lasting product,” CEO James Knott Jr. said. “You can’t get your fingers into it, you can’t get a pair of bolt cutters into it, you can’t get wire cutters into it very easily.”
In 2008, the U.S. government hired the company to build a 27-mile fence along the Arizona and Mexico border. To this day, that 20-foot tall fence is still up. Knott says his company would be ready to extend that fence should the new administration get a green light to build a wall.
“We’d be very pleased to put up that (fence) if we’re allowed to contract,” Knott said. “I think our product would be much more cost-effective versus a concrete wall or brick and mortar wall. You can see through it and it’s probably much more environmentally friendly. It’s easier to install , it could go up much quicker if you need it to, it’s probably maintenance free for practical purposes.”
The company currently has 185 employees. Knott says he’s looking to hire at least 15 more workers this year.
WBZ NewsRadio 1030’s Bernice Corpuz reports