Two weeks ago we attended a screening of the Sausalito Working Waterfront Coalition’s documentary A Tour of Sausalito’s Marinship: A Working Waterfront at Risk. The event was held at Spaulding Marine Center, and despite the sudden rain and cold snap that brought snow to parts of Sonoma, more than 100 people showed up. Produced to raise awareness of and support for the battle to prevent the Marinship from succumbing to the same fate as many other Bay Area working-waterfront locations — giving way to large-scale residential, office, retail, mixed-use, and other non-water-dependent developments — the documentary showcased the variety and uniqueness of the Marinship’s businesses and activities. If you missed the film at Spaulding, you have another opportunity to watch it at the Sausalito Library this coming Friday.
The Marinship is a viable hub of industry, innovation and creativity, and the film delved into many of the various businesses and organizations that are the life force of the historic waterfront district. We met creators, inventors, artisans, tradespeople, and long-term business owners, all of whom have put their money, energy and soul into the industries they provide. The film explored the tight-knit community that works together in support of one another and the collective good of the district. The district, by the way, is where, at the height of the pandemic, around 13,000 plastic face shields were produced in 2020. This is also the district that answered the call 80 years ago to produce 93 Liberty ships and tankers for WWII, and was the site of groundbreaking civil rights struggles against union labor discrimination practices. Today the district is setting a standard for innovation and new technologies that are being shared across the globe, as well as bringing scores of visitors to the wartime Industrial Center Building (ICB) that now thrives as the community of artists and creators who throw open their doors to the public.
As we understand, the City of Sausalito is planning to create 720 units of housing somewhere inside its jurisdiction, and it has the Marinship in its sights. The SWWC says, “There are some locations in the Marinship that would not interfere with industrial and waterfront activities, but that [are] nowhere near the boatyards.” However the concern is that the entire district will be engulfed.
We encourage you to take the time to watch A Tour of Sausalito’s Marinship and learn about what really goes on in this vital part of the Bay Area. You might be surprised.
Sign up to see the film. It’s free.
When: Friday, March 11, 7:30 – 9:00 p.m.
Where: Sausalito Library 420 Litho St., Sausalito.
Get your tickets here.
About Sausalito Working Waterfront Coalition:
“We are a coalition of Sausalito’s Maritime Craftsmen, Technology Innovators, Industrial Fabricators, Artisans, Artists and residents advocating for the protection of our livelihoods, our city’s economic heart, and cultural heritage.
“Our vision for the future includes an expanded maritime/artist/industrial economic engine that leverages Marinship’s history of innovation and fabrication. Marinship is poised to become an innovation and incubation hub focused on resilient technologies that can address the realities of a changing environment. This can only be accomplished if we envision Marinship not as a zone whose return on investment is to be maximized, but as an ethos where ideas are welcomed, vetted, fabricated, tested and developed.”
Read more about the discussions over the Marinship’s future in The Debate Over Sausalito’s Marinship Is Not Over, ‘Lectronic Latitude, October 21, 2020.