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Disney Sells Manhattan Campus, Will Move New York Operations Downtown

Kelly Ripa, Ryan Seacrest and the women from “The View” are taking a trip to downtown New York – along with the rest of Walt Disney’s Big Apple operations.

The owner of ABC and ESPN said it had reached a deal with Trinity Church Wall Street to acquire the rights to develop the church’s property at 4 Hudson Square in New York City in a deal valued at $650 million. As a result of the pact, Disney gains the rights to develop 4 Hudson Square for 99 years. But it means the company will eventually leave the office building it has inhabited since the late 1980s – the longtime site of “World News Tonight” and sundry productions from its New York flagship station, WABC.

“This move represents an historic step forward toward our long-term vision for our New York operations. The Hudson Square district is rapidly becoming a dynamic, innovative hub for media, technology and other creative businesses, ” said Robert A. Iger, chairman and CEO of Disney, in a prepared statement. “We are pleased and proud to be joining this exciting community and look forward to investing in the growth and development of the neighborhood.”

The new property will, once completed, including flagship homes for WABC-TV, ABC News; “Live with Kelly and Ryan” and “The View.” Disney Streaming Services will also relocate to the new headquarters from its current location in Chelsea Market. Disney said “Good Morning America” will continue to be broadcast from its Times Square Studio location.

The 4 Hudson Square site covers a full city block bordered by Hudson, Varick, Van Dam and Spring streets in lower Manhattan. The property is part of Trinity’s real estate portfolio, which dates back to a land grant given by Queen Anne to the church in 1705. Many of the office buildings in the area were built in the 1900s to house printing presses.

Disney said it had struck an agreement to sell its Upper West Side campus in Manhattan to Silverstein Properties, Inc. The transaction does not include the historic Armory building, which stands across the street from the main property and currently houses ESPN operations. Disney will lease-back the facilities for up to five years while developing its new offices.

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