Pier 17

Swiss Pier to Open in San Francisco

Switzerland has had a continuous diplomatic presence in San Francisco since 1850. Now, it plans to further strengthen its commitment to the region by bringing local Swiss entities together under one roof inside the historical Pier 17 on the Embarcadero waterfront. Move-in is planned for Spring 2016.

Joining this new hub are the Consulate General of Switzerland, which covers 13 US states West of the Rockies; swissnex San Francisco, which connects the dots between Switzerland and North America in science, higher education, art, and innovation; and the Swiss Business Hub, in charge of export and promotion of Switzerland as a business location. The West Coast branch of Switzerland Tourism is also likely to join, as are a number of other like-minded partners including the University of Geneva, ECAL, Nestlé Silicon Valley Innovation Outpost, Arcade Solutions, Fastmetrics, and S4GV. Others will be announced soon.

The roughly 24,000 square-foot location at the east end of Pier 17, on the Exploratorium’s education campus and surrounded by numerous creative organizations, is an example of Switzerland’s innovative, interdisciplinary collaboration within its foreign network.

Beacon on the Bay

Switzerland’s Helene Budliger Artieda, Director-General and Directorate for Resources in the Federal Department of Foreign Affairs, said,In the innovative and unconventional location on Pier 17, Switzerland will welcome visitors for various services, including the discovery of high-tech products and investment possibilities, travel documents and information about Switzerland. The Pier will provide a gateway to the dynamic cultural life and economy of the region.”

The Swiss Pier will be a vibrant hub where bilateral relations are nurtured and where interdisciplinary innovators cross paths.

 “In uniting four vital organizations under one roof, next door to the Exploratorium and over the waters of San Francisco Bay, official Switzerland is sending a clear message: San Francisco and Switzerland matter to each other,” said Consul General of Switzerland in San Francisco, Hans-Ulrich Tanner. “As what may be the world’s first floating diplomatic representation, the Pier will be a beacon on the Bay for the nonconformist creativity and bravery of inquiry that make both Switzerland and California great.”

swissnex San Francisco plans a larger and more diverse co-working environment in its new space that will include resident Swiss institutions and companies to be announced soon.

Epicenter for Innovation

“In a bigger space with a one-in-a-kind visibility at Pier 17, we will create more impact for our partners by building a truly collaborative ecosystem, working with a vibrant community of creative minds, and sharing unique insights into disruptive innovation and trends in Switzerland and the US,” commented Christian Simm, Founder and CEO of swissnex San Francisco.

“We are thrilled to welcome our Swiss friends as neighbors and co-creators in a new epicenter for innovation on the northern piers of San Francisco,” said Silva Raker, Director of Business Development and Founder of Global Studios at the Exploratorium. “From joint programming that shares leading Swiss technology with our visitors, to the creation of an online field trip to the CERN research facility in Geneva, to the hosting of innovative Swiss artists like Pe Lang, we have a rich history of collaboration and look forward to much more.”

Featured image by Bruce Damonte, courtesy of EHDD.