Friends of Bay Street has listed for sale the Sag Harbor property it bought two years ago with the intention to build a new home for Bay Street Theater in the heart of the village.
“We have thoroughly examined the site and have determined this property is no longer viable to build a theater as originally envisioned,” said Adam Potter, the chairman of Friends of Bay Street, said in a statement released on Thursday. “Therefore, we have decided to list and sell the property and have retained the Compass’ Hamptons Commercial Real Estate Team to spearhead the process.”
Hal Zwick and Jeff Sztorc, the listing agents shared the asking price of $25 million on Thursday, following the initial announcement.
Friends of Bay Street, a nonprofit board, purchased the property at 22 Long Island Avenue for $13,091,030 in October 2020. Douglas Elliman’s Enzo Morabito and Adam Rothman represented the property when it went on the market the previous July for $13.9 million.
Formerly home to 7-Eleven and a host of other businesses, the 15,000-square-foot, mixed-use building overlooking Sag Harbor Cove and John Steinbeck Waterfront Park was eyed as the space for the nonprofit professional theater’s first purpose-built home.
Multiple theaters were envisioned, including a main stage, a center for new work development, shop and scenery storage, outdoor performance and public spaces.
Bay Street has long been located in leased space on the corner of Bay Street and Route 114 at the foot of the Long Wharf. Now in its 33rd year, the theater serves thousands of students each year and partners.
“Bay Street will remain a vibrant and dynamic cultural center for all of the East End,” said Tracy Mitchell, the executive director of Bay Street Theater and Sag Harbor Center of the Arts.
“Our lease is renewed at our current location and the role we play as a cultural anchor for the village, for over 30 years now, will continue uninterrupted,” she continued. “We are confident in our future and enjoy a loyal, enthusiastic supporter base with a robust year-round schedule. We will continue supporting our community, the artists, and over 30 other non-profits with whom we partner.”
Prime Sag Harbor Property Had Been Eyed for Bay Street
The 0.67-acre property offers 300 feet of frontage on West Water Street and panoramic water views. It is also located adjacent a high-end residential waterfront development, designed by the award-winning Andre Kikoski Architect.
The mixed-use retail building also includes 30 parking spots.
“We have been approached constantly by interested parties as it’s the only downtown waterfront retail availability on the South Fork,” said Zwick. “This prime waterfront spot has always been one of the most intriguing and discussed in all of the Hamptons.”
Zwick and Sztorc were the team behind many of the priciest commercial sales in 2022, including a $28 million off-market deal in East Hampton that was the biggest commercial sale within any village business district on the East End.
How the decision to nix plans for a theater at 22 Long Island Avenue will impact other real estate moves in the village remains to be seen. Property on nearby Bridge and Rose Streets has been acquired over the past two years. There are plans to build a large affordable housing development over retail space on 11, 12, and 23 Bridge Street and 8 and 12 Rose Street.
An entity tied to the non-profit Friends of Bay Street also purchased 2 Main Street, known to locals at Fort Apache, for $18 million in 2021.