The Port of San Diego has adopted a pro-active policy on community relations, to promote dialogue at meetings of the Board of Port Commissioners and through a variety of specialist committees, awareness-raising events to inform the public about on-going projects and gauge opinions, and by active involvement and support for events organised at the port, waterfront and in the Bay of San Diego.
One of the key measures concerns the Tidelands Activation Progamme or TAP, an annual programme of support and funding for cultural, sports, and recreational events of all sizes. The main aim is to make this a world-class cultural and arts destination, for the residents of the five towns and cities on the Bay, and for visitors from farther afield.
The Waterfront Arts & Activation Department was set up specially to oversee the programme, manage the schedule of cultural and arts activities, and direct policy on acquisitions of temporary or permanent artworks.
The Board of Port Commissioners set up various committees involving members of the community, including notably the Arts, Culture & Design Committee, which advises the Waterfront Arts & Activation Department and Board of Port Commissioners on policy. It convenes monthly.
Meanwhile, the Tidelands Activation Program Advisory Committee works to assess and select projects put forward for the programme.
A total of 83 events received support in 2017. Six self-guided tours of the art installations present on the waterfront are also being supported via the port’s site. The annual budget varies, and for the 2017/2018 fiscal year it totalled $726,500.
From July 2019 to July 2020, the port of San Diego will sponsor 64 public events in the waterfront through its Tidelands Activation Program. The program will distribute 430,000 $ of funding and 1,1 million $ in services to bring the people to the waterfront and discover port areas and public spaces.
This proactive, community-oriented policy earned the Port of San Diego two distinctions in 2017: the National Environmental Excellence Award for Public Involvement, and the Silver Bernays Award of Excellence for Community Relations.