ESPN EVP for content Connor Schell described the new facility as a “state of-the-art content factory that will allow us to produced differentiated studio content for both television and digital.” The Disney-owned ESPN already has offices in Manhattan. The new space will be comprised of three studios–two for TV and one for radio. The usually dark pier was lit bright red Monday night in honor of ESPN in a one-night-only display.
Set to open in March or April, the new facility will be the pier’s first tenant to open. Other businesses scheduled to be part of a rollout of offerings at the pier will include restaurants by Jean-Georges Vongerichten and David Chang on the first floor, mezzanine and roof , scheduled to open next summer.
As 6sft previously reported, additional projects moving forward at the seaport include the relocation and redevelopment of the historic Tin Building which will house a massive Vongerichten-branded seafood market whose opening will kick off an official grand opening for the complex, although the rest of the Seaport will be open before the Tin Building’s completion in early 2020.
Hughes leases the Seaport and surrounding historic district properties from the city. The company took it over in 2010 after the entertainment district run the Rouse Company and General Growth Properties floundered.
In addition to a highly-anticipated entertainment, shopping and recreational addition to the East River waterfront, Pier 17 also offers about 150,000 square feet of office space–including the ESPN studio.
Mary Ann Tighe of CBRE, who was tapped to market the space, said, “In one of the city’s most historic districts, full of real cobblestone character, there is now a small amount of 21st century office space on offer. There’s nothing else like it in Manhattan, so I’m not surprised that ESPN decided to make it their New York studio center.”