Port of Los Angeles Case Study

NorthSouth GIS Group delivered an award-winning enterprise GIS solution for the complex operational environment of the Port of Los Angeles, California.
The Port of Los Angeles (POLA) is managed as the self-supporting Harbor Department of the City of Los Angeles, California.

  • Busiest container port in the United States
  • Over 900 employees supporting the many areas of interest for the port, including: Port Police, Engineering, Planning, Environmental, Real Estate, Finance, Construction and Wharfingers
  • One of the largest cruise ship ports on the West Coast of the US.
  • Largest maritime police force in the US, with around 200 personnel.
  • Complex planning and permitting, tenant contracts and lease conditions, regulatory compliance and reporting.



  • A highly dynamic environment, with frequent and significant real-time physical changes.
  • Land and water boundary – large scale land reclamation
  • Weather and water conditions
  • Roads, railroads and container terminals – layout and operations.
  • Threats to the security and safety of Port operations
  • Operational system diversity



An Esri-based Enterprise GIS that cuts across operational divisions addressing operational, security and emergency management issues:

  • Data and ready-made maps served directly from Esri’s ArcGIS for Server to other software and systems e.g. Situation Management, Lease Management and Environmental Database Systems
  • Integrated display of static GIS data and dynamic data including vessels, traffic, weather and Blue Force Tracking for Port Police
  • Delivery and integration of all geospatial information via geoPOLA – the Port-wide Intranet GIS web map viewer


The Port of Los Angeles received the American Association of Port Authorities (AAPA) award for the best Information Communication Technology (ICT) project in 2010. It should be noted that this is an IT award, not just a GIS award and was selected from all US, Canadian and South American ports.

The Port of Los Angeles also received a Special Achievement in GIS Award at the 2010 Esri International User Conference: one of just 200 awards from over 100,000 users.