Construction on the planned Fenway Theater could begin this fall, as Fenway Sports Group landed a crucial approval from a Boston city planning agency Thursday.
The Boston Red Sox are looking to redevelop a parcel of land behind Fenway Park, pitching a new theater as part of the proposal. In partnership with Live Nation, the organization would build a 5,400-person theater over a triangular plot of land at Landsdowne and Ipswich streets that is currently used by satellite trucks and for other parking during Red Sox games.
The Fenway Theater project took a crucial step forward Thursday, when it earned approval from the Boston Planning & Development Agency. Work on the theater could begin this fall, putting it on track for a 2021 opening. More from the Boston Globe:
Red Sox officials have said the music hall, to be called Fenway Theater, would be a way to keep Fenway Park busy during the offseason and enable the team to build two floors of new event space and amenities behind the bleachers inside the stadium itself.
The Red Sox have also agreed to donate $500,000 to the nearby Boston Arts Academy, $200,000 to local parks, and to fund studies of potential transportation improvements in the area.
The theater would host events on a year-round basis, with the goal of attracting shows that are too small for arenas/stadiums but too large for venues with a capacity below 2,500. Fenway Park bleacher upgrades that would lead to the removal of six rows of seating to make room for new concessions and restrooms, while also connecting the ballpark to the theater, have also been proposed by the Red Sox, but those plans have been considered separately from the venue.
Rendering courtesy Fenway Sports Group.