Construction to begin on new Texas esports arena

ASM Global and Port San Antonio in Texas have announced the initial timeline for the construction of a $60-million Innovation Center complex which includes a 2,500-seat, multi-purpose technology arena.

The 130,000ft2 venue will be the first of its kind in North America and on completion in 2022 will be one of the most versatile in ASM’s portfolio, accommodating world-class esports competitions, concerts, corporate functions, elite hospitality, an array of hands-on educational programs in leading technologies, and more.

Bob Newman, President and CEO of ASM Global, said:

"We salute the Port and its leadership for their forward-thinking vision and desire to further develop the large campus into a hub for global innovation.

"We look forward to partnering in bringing this innovative, world-class venue to life and delivering unparalleled experiences for the entire South Texas region and beyond.

"Located in the heart of the 1,900-acre Port campus on the site of San Antonio’s former Kelly Field Air Force Base — already one of the nation’s fastest-growing innovation destinations — the new facility will be at the centre of major activities that are transforming the economic trajectory of the region."

Construction will begin this October, with completion scheduled for early 2022. It will be led by Sundt Construction with designs developed by San Antonio-based RVK Architects. Stafford Sports is serving as the Port’s consultant on the project.

Key highlights of the new development project:

  • 2,500-seat Technology/Esports Arena that can be configured for multiple uses in addition to esports competitions, including concerts, conventions, product launches, large-scale training programs, and special events.
  • New home of the San Antonio Museum of Science & Technology (SAMSAT), hosting numerous hands-on exhibits, demonstrations, and educational programs, as well as showcasing innovations that are being developed by technology firms at the Port and throughout the region to prospective buyers.
  • 24-hour LAN Gaming Center, serving as a leading destination for gaming access and events, and a community gathering space for a wide range of users, including members of the Port campus community and general public.
  • Full-Scale Food Hall, providing in-venue dining and hospitality services as well as catering support for various events hosted at the center, and daily culinary options for the 14,000+ workforce currently employed by the Port’s tenant customers in leading global industries such as aerospace, cybersecurity, defense, manufacturing, education and robotics.
  • High-Tech Research and Development Lab, delivering scalable space and prototyping/fabrication equipment to support the work of startups, and allowing greater collaboration between tech companies, universities and other research partners.
  • All profits from the Innovation Center will be reinvested to support technology-focused education at the facility and elsewhere in the region, including K-12 STEM/STEAM programs as well as professional development programs.

Port president and CEO Jim Perschbach said:

"In an increasingly connected world, this Innovation Center will help develop and strengthen the best talent and ideas with a sharp focus on addressing todays’ biggest challenges and participating in an exciting world of opportunities across the nation and around the world to solve those challenges.

"We could not have selected a better partner in this project than ASM Global to join our ecosystem in San Antonio and further raise our community’s profile as a leading destination and global competitor in today’s most advanced technologies."

Chuck Steedman, ASM Global Executive vice president of strategy and development said:

"This next-generation development will be unlike any other in North America. All of us at ASM are excited to be able to leverage our extensive esports and venue management expertise, not just for the benefit of the local community and economy, but also to serve as a global showcase of American innovation."