The San Diego Unified Port District is the port authority for the Port of San Diego. California's legislature created the Port of San Diego in 1962 to manage the development of the bay and waterfront lands. The Port of San Diego includes waterfront properties at San Diego, Imperial Beach, National City, Coronado, and Chula Vista. A seven-member Board of Port Commissioners representing these municipalities governs the Port of San Diego.
The San Diego Unified Port District strives to maintain a world-class port by providing excellent public service. The stated mission of the District is to balance economic benefits with community services, environmental stewardship, and public safety while also protecting Tidelands Trust resources. The District has identified seven strategic goals for the Port of San Diego extending to the year 2011. These include promoting maritime industries, promoting a dynamic and diverse waterfront, improving environmental conditions, ensuring safety and security for people and property (including cargo), promoting public understanding of and confidence in the Port of San Diego, developing a world-class port organization, and strengthening the Port of San Diego's financial performance.
Vessels waiting for a pilot to enter the Port of San Diego must get permission to anchor from the local naval authorities. They will find good anchorage at least 11 meters southeast of the Port of San Diego channel entrance. The Port of San Diego experiences a mean tidal range of 1.25 meters and a diurnal tidal range of 1.74 meters. The San Diego Bay Pilots Association, Inc. serves the San Diego Bay, and vessels should contact them at least an hour before arriving at the Port of San Diego.
The Port of San Diego Bay is a crescent-shaped landlocked bay about 22.5 kilometers long, ranging from 487 to 3660 meters wide. A narrow sand spit separates it from the Pacific Ocean. The city extends to the north and northeastern sides of the Bay. Chula Vista and National City are on the eastern and southern shores of the Bay, and Coronado is on the southeastern San Diego Bay. The entrance to the Bay and the Port of San Diego is between Point Loma to the west and North Island to the east.
The Port of San Diego's National City Marine Cargo Terminal is a 50-hectare complex at Bay Marina Drive on the National City waterfront. Operated by the Port of San Diego, it has eight berths totaling 1.5 kilometers that handle primarily automobiles and lumber. Receiving automobiles, Berths 1 and 2 are a total 427 meters long. Berth 1 has alongside depth of 6.1 meters, and Berth 2 has alongside depth of 10.6 meters. A 3.7 thousand square meter transit shed serves these Port of San Diego berths. Berths 3 through 6, which are used to receive automobiles, are a total 617 meters long with alongside depth of 10.6 meters. Handling lumber in the Port of San Diego, the Terminal's Berths 10 and 11 are a total 457 meters long with alongside depth of 10.6 meters.
The National City Cargo Terminal in the Port of San Diego is served by two warehouses for vehicles operated by the Pasha Group. Warehouse 24A offers over 19 thousand square meters of storage area, and Warehouse 24B contains almost 33 thousand square meters of storage space. These Port of San Diego berths are served by three kilometers in six rail spurs that will accommodate 125 conventional or Automax railcars. The terminal is also served by direct connections with the Interstate 5 Freeway. The berths are also used for handling foreign and domestic general cargo in the Port of San Diego, and there is a launch for recreational craft at Berths 10 and 11.
The Port of San Diego's Tenth Avenue Cargo Terminal is an almost 39-hectare multi-purpose facility dedicated to handling frozen and chilled, breakbulk, and dry and liquid bulk cargoes as well as a limited volume of containers. The Terminal offers 9.3 hectares of warehouses and transit sheds, more than 10 hectares of paved open space, and eight berths with alongside depth of up to 12.8 meters. The major import cargoes include refrigerated goods, fertilizers, cement, breakbulk commodities, and forest products. Principal export cargoes are refrigerated, breakbulk, and bulk commodities. The cold storage facility at the Tenth Avenue Cargo Terminal in the Port of San Diego is a 2.8 hectare state-of-the-art on-dock facility offering a carefully controlled environment. Goods stored in the facility include meat, poultry, and seafood; fruits and vegetables; concentrates; and dairy products.
The Tenth Avenue Cargo Terminal in the Port of San Diego also includes a state-of-the-art bulk loader operated by IMC Chemicals, Inc. One of the most efficient loaders in the world, it is used to export soda ash, borax, sodium sulfate, pyroborates, bicarbonate of soda, and other bulk cargoes. In 2008, this Port of San Diego terminal handled 744 thousand metric tons of bulk cargoes.
The Port of San Diego's Tenth Avenue Cargo Terminal offers a total of over 1.1 kilometers of berthing space in six berths. Berths 1 and 2 are a total of 341 meters long with alongside depth of 9.5 meters. Berths 3 through 6 are a total of 786 meters long with alongside depths of 10.7 and 10.9 meters. Owned and operated by the Port of San Diego, it is served by two dry storage warehouses and two transit sheds. Warehouse A covers 4.6 thousand square meters, and Warehouse C covers 3.5 hectares. Warehouse C is served by two rail tracks. Both Port of San Diego warehouses are adjacent to open storage areas and have truck loading platforms and ramps. Each transit shed covers almost 18 thousand square meters.
The Refrigerated Container Facility at the Port of San Diego's Tenth Avenue Cargo covers 8.4 hectares and contains a 2.7-hectare refrigerated warehouse, 511 refrigerated container plugs, a 929 square meter maintenance and repair building, and a container wash structure. The Port of San Diego's Cold Storage Facility can accommodate multiple deep-water vessels, with alongside depth of from 9.14 to 10.67 meters and a 91- to 244-meter distance from vessel to cold storage. The facility offers almost 68 thousand cubic meters of off-dock storage for frozen and chilled goods and 480 tons of blast-freezing capability. Just minutes from Interstate Highways 5, 8, and 15, the Port of San Diego cold storage facilities operate 24 hours a day with temperature monitoring, terminal security, and U.S. Customs and US Department of Agriculture (USDA) inspection services.
The Tenth Avenue Marine Terminal at the Port of San Diego is a 384-hectare complex at the San Diego-Coronado Bay Bridge. Owned and operated by the Port of San Diego, the complex is located in the center of the port's commercial shipping activities, and it contains several bulk-handling operations, a bulk silo complex, a cold storage facility, and a traveling loader/unloader for chemicals and other dry bulk cargoes. Berths 1 and 2, which receive cold storage products for the Port of San Diego, have a chill facility for fruits and vegetables and a deep-freeze facility for frozen goods. The berths are a total 341 meters long with alongside depth of 9.1 meters. Berths 1 and 2 are served by terminal rail access and are connected with Harbor Drive via the Cesar E. Chavez Parkway. These Port of San Diego berths are connected by pipeline with steel storage tanks with total capacity for almost 26.7 thousand cubic meters.
Berths 3 through 6 at the Port of San Diego's Tenth Avenue Marine Terminal handle both foreign and domestic general and containerized cargoes and dry and liquid bulk. The berths are a total 786 meters long with alongside depths of 10.7 and 10.9 meters. These Port of San Diego berths are served by two transit sheds covering a total of 1.8 hectares of floor area. They are served by two surface rail tracks totaling 1.2 kilometers and additional tracks connecting warehouses and terminal. They are also connected with Harbor Drive via the Cesar E. Chavez Parkway. These Port of San Diego berths are connected by pipeline with steel cargo tanks with capacity for more than 11.3 thousand cubic meters.
Berths 7 and 8 at the Tenth Avenue Marine Terminal are also owned and operated by the Port of San Diego. They handle both foreign and domestic general and bulk cargoes. The berths total 198 meters in length. The Port of San Diego's Berth 7 has alongside depth of 10.6 meters, and Berth 8 has alongside depth of 12.8 meters. The berths are served by one 280-meter surface track that connects with the BNSF and San Diego & Imperial Valley railways and are connected with Harbor Drive via the Cesar E. Chavez Parkway.
The Port of San Diego's Tenth Avenue Marine Terminal is served by two warehouses. Warehouse B, which stores cold and dry food products, is operated by San Diego Refrigerated Services. It contains 9.3 thousand square meters of cold storage area and 4.6 thousand square meters of area available for public storage. Warehouse C is operated by the Port of San Diego, and it stores dry commodities. It offers 3.5 hectares of area for dry storage, all of which is available for public storage. Both Port of San Diego warehouses are connected to the BNSF and San Diego & Imperial Valley railways. Both warehouses are also equipped with truck ramps.
The Port of San Diego's Tenth Avenue Marine Terminal bulkloader has rated capacity of 1.8 thousand tons per hour. Bulk loading facilities are available ship-side for soda ash, potash, and other free-flowing dry bulk goods. Railcar operations are covered and can operate in all weather conditions. Handling and storing grains or minerals in the Port of San Diego, a completely automated 32.9 thousand metric ton bulk storage silo complex is connected to the bulkloader. The Port of San Diego's traveling loader is located on 152.4 meters of track. The Tenth Avenue Marine Terminal at the Port of San Diego also contains three one-million gallon tanks for handling and storing liquid bulk cargoes as well as facilities and tanks for ships bunkers. Other Port of San Diego waterfront facilities receive petroleum products and/or bunker large ocean-going vessels.
The Cruise Terminal is located at the B Street Pier, which is owned and operated by the Port of San Diego. The Cruise Terminal includes a 2.8 thousand square meter main terminal building, two supplemental buildings of a total 1.4 thousand square meters for receiving passengers and baggage, and two warehouse areas covering 4.6 thousand square meters. The Port of San Diego's B Street Pier contains 732 meters in five berths with alongside depth of 10.7 meters. Berth 3 is 122 meters long. Berths 1 and 2 are 305 meters long, as are Berths 4 and 5.
The Broadway Pier in the Port of San Diego also serves cruise vessels, although in an overflow capacity. It offers five berths of a total 651 meters in length with alongside depth of 10.7 meters. Berth 3 is 41 meters long. Berths 1 and 2 are 305 meters long, as are berths 4 and 5. The Port of San Diego maintains a schedule of cruise vessel arrivals which is available on its website.
Thirteen of the waterfront marine repair yards in the Port of San Diego have a total of six drydocks with lifting capacity for from 272 to 2.8 thousand metric tons and 24 marine railways with haul-out capacity from 18 to almost 1.3 thousand metric tons. The marine repair firms in the Port of San Diego also use a graving dock owned by the US Navy for below-waterline repairs on large vessels.
The Port of San Diego's Embarcadero Marina Park Pier, located near the San Diego-Coronado Bridge, is a popular fishing pier near Seaport Village. The pier is 472 meters long with alongside depth of 5.5 meters. The G Street Pier, which serves tuna vessels, is 278 meters long with alongside depth of 8.5 meters. The Fish Harbor Pier in the Port of San Diego is popular with sports fishers, and it is 182 meters long with alongside depth of 3.6 meters. The Crosby Street Park and Pier is popular with RVers and day campers. This Port of San Diego pier is 240 meters long with alongside depth of 7.8 meters.