Los Angeles Business Journal

LA Port’s Blue Project


12/29/17: LA Business Journal - L.A. Port’s Blue Project: ‘Ocean-Focused’

A different sort of construction project got underway last month at the Port of Los Angeles, where a marine research and innovation incubator is rising.

It’s smaller than a shipping terminal or bridge or other typically mammoth port project. The La Kretz Blue Economy Incubator will occupy 10,000-square-feet and operate as an innovation hub and incubator within the 35-acre Alta Sea campus on port property.

Alta Sea, a public-private partnership and business accelerator, formed in 2013 after the L.A City Council unanimously voted to approve a 50-year lease to transform a 100-year-old pier – City Dock No. 1 – into a marine research and innovation center.

The incubator will focus on new technologies – or what Alta Sea Executive Director Jenny Krusoe calls “blue technology.”

“The La Kretz Blue Economy Incubator will find and support entrepreneurs developing aquaculture, undersea mapping and other businesses vital to understanding the largely unexplored frontier at our doorstep,” Krusoe said in a statement. “Blue Technology is part of the blue economy. It is robotics that will be built for researching and developing new ways to study the ocean, monitor energy, pipelines and exploration.”

Plans call for three to four such “ocean-focused businesses” to conduct research and development at any given time as residents of the incubator.

The La Kretz Blue Economy Incubator was largely funded by Morton La Kretz, real estate developer and founder of Hollywood-based Crossroads Management. La Kretz is a supporter of various business development projects, including the downtown-based La Kretz Innovation campus where the Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator is housed.

AltaSea selected Gafcon to provide project management services for their new 35-acre campus located in San Pedro. Built on a historic pier with access to the deep ocean, the campus will expand science-based understanding of the ocean; incubate and sustain ocean-related business; and pioneer new ocean-related education programs.

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