AltaSea, according to its Latin origin (“alta,” meaning high, deep, noble, profound), has high aspirations for innovative solutions and deep roots in scientific research, collaboration and community. With a 35-acre campus at the Port of Los Angeles dedicated to uniting global marine research, education, business, government philanthropy and community — together, we have access to a sea of opportunity.
AltaSea will be a leading, world-class urban marine research and innovation center at the Port of Los Angeles. An unprecedented collaboration among government, business, marine science, education and philanthropy, the AltaSea public-private partnership has been created to transform the historic City Dock No. 1 site at the Port of Los Angeles into a nexus for research on ocean-related problems critical to Southern California, the nation and the world. The center will bring together researchers and scientists from major colleges and universities, government agencies and industries to study and develop innovative global solutions to benefit generations to come.
In December 2013, the Los Angeles City Council unanimously approved a 50-year lease to transform a 100-year-old pier on the LA Waterfront in San Pedro into a world-class urban marine research and innovation center called AltaSea at the Port of Los Angeles. The lease agreement – signed between the Port of Los Angeles and Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors, a nonprofit organization that currently serves as the fiscal sponsor for the AltaSea project – involves approximately 35 acres of land and water at the Port’s City Dock No. 1 site, Berths 56-60 and Berths 70-71.
The AltaSea site will be developed through a public-private partnership that includes the Port, AltaSea and a host of regional public and private universities. Funding commitments for Phase 1 of the project total $82 million to date, including $57 million in site-related capital investments by the Port and a $25 million gift by the Annenberg Foundation. Phase 1 is currently estimated to cost $185 million with a 2018 completion goal.
The planned AltaSea campus is slated to feature circulating seawater labs, classrooms, lecture halls, support facilities, an interpretive center, a facility for marine-related commercial ventures, offices, and an opportunity to develop the world's largest seawater wave tank for studying tsunamis and rogue waves. The anchor tenant of Phase 1 will be the Southern California Marine Institute, a strategic alliance of 12 major universities in Southern California that have marine science academic and research programs. The entire project cost is estimated at more than $500 million with completion over a 15- to 20-year timeframe.
The AltaSea public-private partnership represents an unprecedented collaboration among government, business, marine science, education and philanthropy for conducting targeted research on marine and ocean-related problems, particularly those with significant socio-economic impact with tangible benefits to the Los Angeles region. Once complete, the campus will provide work environments for researchers and scientists from major colleges and universities, government agencies and industries to study and help solve critical problems facing oceans and coastal cities today – from rising sea levels that could result in damaging coastal flooding, to food and energy security, to climate change, among others.
For more information, visit altasea.org.