What, too cynical?

Here’s what’s up, courtesy of the Globe:

Developer John B Hynes, along with development partner Morgan Stanley, is proposing to build a large, multi-use project — covering a 12-block neighborhood — in the Seaport District.

Seaport Square, on 23 acres of parking lots formerly owned by Frank H. McCourt Jr., could cover 6 million square feet when complete. It will include residential buildings, office space, restaurants, retail space, and a large park.

[The property will also include] a performing arts center in a complex that would also feature a 300-room hotel, adult education and conference facilities, and a health club.

The developer is proposing building a 3,000-person theater, one that could be broken up into smaller spaces, in the 250-400 person range, to be used by local and regional theater companies (theater being an all-inclusive term for dance, drama, and music, in this case).

But, here’s the problem. I think there’s an extremely limited number of theater companies willing (and able) to use this space. I’ve never read anywhere that theater companies are clamoring for more space, if it could just be built.

Mind you, we’re not talking a 100-person theater with a drop cloth as a curtain and Joe and Julie up-front taking tickets (and, by the way, they’re also the stage manager and in the cast …).

Any theaters built would be at a significant cost to the developer, a cost he would want to recoup.

Meaning, rents won’t be cheap.

Several important players in the local theater scene were interviewed, and they all seemed optimistic that any theater space in the Seaport District would be welcomed, and be easy to fill.

Says Spiro Veloudos, of the Lyric Stage, “If there was a 350 to 400 seat theater on the waterfront, I’d be looking to rent it to add to the space we have.”

Well, he knows better than I …

And, Mr Hynes is optimistic.

Without saying specifically whom he has met with, Hynes said, “There are some institutions in Boston, like the Opera, Boston Ballet, Berklee School of Music, all of whom might be interested in leasing or using this facility.”

Several important players in the local theater scene were interviewed, and they all seemed optimistic that any theater space in the Seaport District would be welcomed, and be easy to fill.

I’m not convinced.

Seaport Square envisions art center – By Thomas C. Palmer, Jr., The Boston Globe

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Updated: 1st Q 2018

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