Move over SpaceX, there’s a new rocket launch company coming to the Port of Long Beach.
The Long Beach Board of Harbor Commissioners on Thursday approved an agreement with launch vehicle developer ABL Space Systems to build a spacecraft processing facility at the Port of Long Beach. It will also use waterfront area for the delivery and shipping of its cargo.
Founded in 2017, California-based ABL Space Systems will take a little less than 9.5 acres of land and waterfront at the former Long Beach Naval Station at Navy Mole on Pier T.
Thursday’s agreement comes five months after the Port of Long Beach agreed to lease a site to SpaceX, adjacent to what will now become the ABL Space Systems site. SpaceX uses its site as a marine terminal for its West Coast rocket recovery operations.
“We welcome ABL Space Systems to the Port of Long Beach family. It’s exciting to add yet another tenant in the rapidly growing spacecraft technology industry,” said Long Beach Harbor Commission President Steven Neal. “We look forward to what we know will be a mutually beneficial relationship with our newest tenant.”
Included in the five-year lease is a 25,000-square-foot integration and payload processing facility, 20,000-square-foot warehouse space, and a 13,000-square-foot office space. The location, previously occupied by rocket launching ship company Sea Launch, will be used by ABL for a range of operations including vehicle processing, payload integration, and maritime operations supporting the company’s launch facilities around the world.
“This is an innovative company, on the cutting edge of private spacecraft technology, offering wider access to space,” said Port of Long Beach Executive Director Mario Cordero. “We’re very pleased to provide this land to ABL Space Systems.”
“This site is highly strategic for our growth,” said Harry O’Hanley, CEO of ABL Space Systems. “Maritime operations are key to scaling our launch capabilities globally. We’ll also re-activate the old Sea Launch payload processing facility to handle spacecraft of almost any size.”
SpaceNews.com reported this week ABL has raised an additional $200 million just seven months after a $170 million Series B round in March.
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