- Port Place | A New Waterfront Development
San Pedro, California & The Port of Los Angeles
- "Port Place" is a unique urban development proposal for the Southern California community of San Pedro. Located within the Port of Los Angeles, the project site is influenced by a variety of variables; including the California Tidelands Act which limits use of public land along the waterfront to the "establishment, improvement, and conduct of a harbor... for all purposes of commerce, navigation [and fishery]".
The 30 acre project site extrudes from the coast, forming a unique peninsula-shaped site currently known as Ports O' Calls. The site is widely popular on the weekends, with hundreds of local visitors coming to enjoy food and activities. Currently the site is a mix of buildings; in a range of architectural styles, strewn along the waterfront with no real pattern or thought. The main component to Ports O' Calls is the overwhelming parking lot that dominates nearly 80% of the site. During the week, the site sits empty, with few visitors and empty parking lots.
My proposal for "Port Place" creates a unique destination and icon for San Pedro. Through cutting away the land mass to form an island, the site now becomes an engine for revitalization. The creation of three unique districts, The Island, The Market, and The Village all take advantage of the impressive harbor views and accessibility to the waterfront. Each district will have a mix of uses to attract local and regional visitors throughout the week, increasing the sites impact on the local community. Improved transit in and through the site as well as paths of discovery draw visitors into Port Place and allow for enjoyment all day long. The addition of residences in The Village and houseboat slips along the waterfront will strengthen the activity at the site. A world-class conference and hotel center will draw national and international visitors to Port Place to enjoy the unique views and amenities now afforded in San Pedro.
Various urban design strategies were considered to enhance the experience while at Port Place. Large pedestrian promenades and boardwalks line the waterfronts, bringing people right to the water. A prominent, winding commercial and retail center anchors the island and takes visitors through the site, starting and ending at the waterfront. Central to the island is a performance center and museum to honor the history and culture of Southern California. Port Place fully embodies the industrial port, the people, and the distinct opportunity to enjoy waterfront life at its best.Fall 2011 | University of Southern California