I dont know if this has been suggested or not so i'll apologise if it has in advance.
Why not make a shuttle bay for ESD and link it that way? Then with the Tutorial mission's add one that says something like "take a shuttle to Utopia Planetia to pick up your new ship" that way the problem should be solved, then its included in the tutorial and new player's shouldn't have any issue's. You could also include tutorial missions for everything else other player's have suggested.
If they do keep it around I think it would be cool to let you select your next ship a few levels before hand, so on subsequent visits you could see her being built. also, I'd like to see a commissioning ceremony and shakedown mission
I can support this.
Problem is, however, that the instant that they put in Utopia Planitia, and leave it there, people will be demanding content for it. Immediately, or at least in the short term. Making content requires resources that would probably be better put to making full-up missions and enhancing other playability aspects, or just doing things to keep the lights on. I would rather they put their effort into actual missions, myself. If it weren't for the likely instant demands for a full suite of content to go along with Utopia Planitia's availability, though, I'd say they should definitely leave the map in. As-is, though, while I'd like it, I more than understand if they don't.
...The major issue is the belief that it would be confusing for new players. ESD is the one stop shop right now, and while most of you have been around for a bit, and know your way around, a new player might be confused if everything they need is at ESD. . . oh, except for ships which I have to go to this other map for. . . how do I get there again?
Yes, Klingons do have to go to a separate map to access the shipyard. But Klingons are guaranteed to have at least played to level 25 as a Fed character, and therefor, are already out of their larval stage.
Personally, I prefer to have most housekeeping-related elements centrally located. Bank, BOffs, Exchange, Shipyard, etc... And frankly Crafting needs to be available in other locations as well...
So, while it would be great to keep the UP map up (would prefer it) as an additional social area, I for one would not want to see it become the exclusive source of ship aquisition.
That said, I would love to see it become another Shipyard AND include all of the other access points as well, (Bank, Crafting, Exchange, and so on)... In that case, while out of the way in a sense, it would become the most useful hub in the game--for low and mid-range leveled toons anyway. Adding crafting to DS9 would trully make that location (DS9) the ultimate all around most useful Social Hub--because of the HG, MACO, and Omega store of course.