Construction of Puerto Rico Film District begins
SAN JUAN – Gov. Ricardo Rosselló participated Monday in the groundbreaking of the Puerto Rico Film District, where completely digital studios will be located.
With a $70 million investment, the project is expected to create 150 direct and 200 indirect jobs during its construction. Once completed, the film district could have created more than 1,325 direct and indirect jobs.
“This new project will be vital for the projection of Puerto Rico internationally, making us a key player in the international film industry. Today, we tell the world we are ready to continue doing business while showing that the island continues to create jobs for Puerto Ricans in various industries,” the governor said.
The district will comprise 180,000 square feet of construction and consist of five sound studios, administrative offices and conference rooms, as well as post-production and editing facilities, dressing rooms, storage space, an industrial kitchen, a “university” and laundry services.
The St. Clair Collection project–designed by the architects Álvarez, Díaz & Villalón and developed by FR Construction–is expected to be completed by the end of December next year.
The executive director of the Convention Center District Authority, Omar Marrero, stressed that the “project will expand the range of opportunities for both the District and those who visit. The Puerto Rico Film District will occupy 13 acres of land within the Convention District Authority, which will become an attraction for the local public, tourists and members of the film industry.”
Also speaking at the announcing event, Economic Development Secretary Manuel Laboy Rivera said “the film industry in Puerto Rico has generated approximately $256 million…over the past 18 months.”
The official added: “We have seen an increase in film production, a fact that confirms we are on the right track by offering more and better tools for local and foreign filmmakers to invest in Puerto Rico and continue to contribute to economic development….”
The director of the island’s Film Industry Development Program, Pedro Rúa, said for his part that “Puerto Rico is undoubtedly one of the best filming destinations in the United States. Now with the creation of the large-scale Film Studio of the Puerto Rico Film District, backed by the infrastructure incentives of Act 27, we will be positioning ourselves competitively worldwide. Film production on the island is at its best moment and with the support of the governor, nothing will stop us.”
Meanwhile, Richard Abramson, partner at St. Clair Collection, commented that “it is a pleasure to be part of this ambitious project for the island, as an expert in the film industry, I believe Puerto Rico is the ideal place to recreate any part of the world. It has history, climate, knowledgeable people and a team of people behind the scenes with vast experience. That’s why we bet on the development of the film industry in Puerto Rico.”
Similarly, investor Keith St. Clair, who already has several investments on the island, said: “We continue at a steady pace, creating strong works that contribute to the economic development of the island. This new development perpetuates the expansion of the Convention District, establishing it as a focal point for the creation of new jobs, companies and the development of a new Puerto Rico.
“Three years ago, I came to the island and saw firsthand its potential for its continuous development; today we take a step forward and redouble the commitment we have with this beautiful island and its people,” he added.
Secretary of State Luis Rivera Marín, Tourism Co. Executive Director Carla Campos and Ports Authority Executive Director Anthony Maceira also participated in the event.
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