A Larger U.S. Consulate General Has Opened in Tijuana, Near the Otay Mesa Border Crossing, to Act as a Facilitator Between the Two Governments 
After 47 years of long lines of visa applicants, the U.S. government has moved its Consulate General  in Tijuana  across town with more than 100,000 square feet of space in the main building, intended to offer both greater efficiency and tighter security at a time when the consulate’s role has grown increasingly complex. On Monday, offices opened in the consulate , a $120 million gated compound near the Otay Mesa border crossing.
“We’re not a traditional consulate that you might have thought of ten or 20 years ago,” said Steven Kashkett, the consul general, a 53-year-old career diplomat who oversees a staff of 50 Americans and 100 Mexicans operating out of the Tijuana facility. “We are now basically a mini-embassy representing the U.S. government in this part of Mexico.”
Issuing visas and providing services to American citizens abroad are the stock-and-trade of consular offices worldwide. However, Kashkett said much of the work at the Tijuana consulate near the Otay Mesa border crossing involves reporting on regional counternarcotics efforts, as well as U.S government affairs, both political and economic on the border. The consulate, he said, “is much more of a facilitator between the two governments than it was in the past.”
In recent years, more U.S agencies have operated out of the consulate’s office. They now include Immigration and Customs Enforcement, the Drug Enforcement Administration , the Federal Bureau of Investigation , the Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco and Firearms  and the Department of Commerce.
“…In a country like Mexico, where U.S. interests are so multi-faceted, in a city like Tijuana that is such an important element of the national fabric, the consulate assumes a role that a consulate in Lyon, France, might not,” said Jeffrey Davidow , a former U.S. ambassador to Mexico.
The Tijuana consular district oversees U.S. government affairs in Baja California and Baja California Sur, which translates to an estimated 250,000 U.S. citizens, not including the tourists, or U.S. citizens in Mexico for jobs, family, and business.
“We are the highest volume, most complex American citizen services post in the world,” said Kashkett, whose previous posts have included Halifax, Port-au-Prince, Beirut and Jerusalem.