24244 Overseas Highway
Summerland Key, FL 33042

Situated in the heart of the Lower Keys and only 24 miles from Key West, Mote Marine Laboratory's Elizabeth Moore International Center for Coral Reef Research & Restoration (IC2R3) is a fully equipped marine science facility dedicated to marine research and education in the Florida Keys.

The facility is located with easy access to the variety of nearby habitats, including reefs, sea-grass meadows, near-shore hard-bottom, mangrove forests and unique terrestrial communities, most within the protection of National Wildlife Refuges and NOAA’s Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary. 


  • 19,000 square feet of research, education, offices and dormitories, WiFi and convenient access to Lower Florida Keys coral reef sites.
  • Classroom or meeting room with capacity for up to 25 people.
  • Staff equipped to provide field support for visiting researchers (details on visitor support).
  • Indoor and outdoor seawater systems, environmental control rooms, raceways and experimental tanks for mesocosm-level studies, including research on ocean acidification and climate change impacts to reef organisms (details on wetlab research system).
  • Molecular equipment to process and prepare samples for generation sequencing, genomics, metagenomics and transcriptomics (details on microbiology and molecular biology dry labs).
  • Microbial supplies for molecular and culturable applications within the marine environment.
  • Carbonate chemistry laboratory for ocean acidification studies (details on chemistry dry lab and Climate and Acidification Ocean Simulator).
  • Category-5 hurricane resistant, precast concrete-based building.
  • Eco-friendly design includes 30.1 kilowatt solar panels, rainwater capture system, and high-efficiency heating and cooling (LEED Gold certified).
  • Alfred Goldstein Institute for Climate Change Studies.

The wide variety of research and education programs conducted at Mote’s IC2R3 (formerly Tropical Research Laboratory) reflect the diversity of Mote's staff and experience. Current Mote programs with ongoing research at IC2R3 include: 

Scientists at IC2R3 and its Goldstein Institute study coral reef communities’ response to global climate change impacts such as rising ocean temperatures and ocean acidification; investigate major coral disease outbreaks and the overall  microbiome of microscopic life forms that can help or harm coral reefs; optimize coral reef restoration efforts with threatened and vulnerable species; assess the genetic diversity of native coral species, including the potential for genotypes (genetic varieties) with natural resilience to stressors, and more.  

To inquire about reservations to obtain field support, or check availability for research lab space and classroom/meeting room space, please submit a PRELIMINARY REQUEST.

If you wish to support Mote’s diverse and dedicated research and restoration efforts with coral reefs, visit mote.org/donate or contact Andria Piekarz at 941-388-4441, ext. 352, or apiekarz@mote.org.