REACH, VSFB unveil space master plan to boost Central Coast economy

Jun 3, 2021

The Central Coast’s Regional Economic Action Coalition (REACH) announced June 3 new progress made with Vandenberg Space Force Base and other partners to develop a plan for local space development.

REACH unveiled its Phase one Commercial Space Master Plan in partnership with Vandenberg that outlines future economic and development goals for the Central Coast.

Santa Barbara County, Cal Poly, the governor’s office and Deloitte all partnered with REACH and Vandenberg to contribute to the creation of the plan.

The plan outlines three major goals including attracting space industry activities to the Central Coast, modernizing and investing in infrastructure and strengthening the Central Coast space identity.

REACH hopes to establish Vandenberg as a competitive space enterprise.

Andrew Hackleman is the project lead for the master plan and oversees all aspects of the collaboration. He said these goals are set to help boost the local economy.

“Our next steps are to implement this plan and to work to attract more space activity here on the Central Coast, see jobs for Central Coast residents prioritized, to work with the state of California and the nation and [help] the Central Coast be part of the future of space,” Hackleman said.

Cal Poly President Jeffrey Armstrong spoke at the plan’s unveiling. He said Cal Poly students will play a vital role in the economic development of commercial space over the next several decades.

“At Cal Poly, space, cyber security, engineering and beyond are a key part of our mission to provide the state of California and our Central Coast region amazing talent,” Armstrong said.

Cal Poly conducted an economic impact analysis showing that Vandenberg Space Force Base currently employs more than 14,000 people on the Central Coast, averaging an annual output of $4.5 billion.

REACH estimates Vandenberg could add nearly 2,000 well-paying jobs and an additional $1.5 billion of local annual output by 2030, further boosting the Central Coast economy.

The complete Commercial Space Master Plan can be found here.