Once fully operational, Dave Greeley, principal at Team Orbis and project consultant for The Pitch, said he hopes the space becomes a place where local employees, sports fans and the broader community can gather together to eat, drink and relax.
Located at 13000 Harris Ridge Blvd., The Pitch is part of Karlin Real Estate’s 50-acre Parmer Pond District, which is situated on the developer’s larger 300-acre corporate campus, Parmer Austin, Karlin Vice President Mike McGlashan said. The Pitch sits adjacent to Parmer Field—the home of Austin FC’s academy teams—and the St. David’s Performance Center—the team’s training facility.
The Pitch is expected to open to the public in February, according to a Jan. 24 press release.
“This is a small little slice of downtown Austin but here tucked 10 miles away in Northeast Austin,” Greeley said in an interview with Community Impact Newspaper. “It's a great neighborhood gathering spot; it's a de facto park for the neighbors; and it's a community spot not only for the tenants, but the Austin FC community and Austinites far and wide.”
Deemed a hospitality destination, The Pitch, which was funded entirely by Karlin Real Estate, will feature a series of multilevel shipping containers that will house the venue’s restaurant kitchens and indoor seating, McGlashan said.
Operated by Corner Kick Hospitality Group—the team behind several Austin restaurants including 24 Diner, Irene’s, Fairground and Easy Tiger—the food and beverage options at The Pitch include Ranger Burger, Ga Roti, Taco Flats, Sand Bar, Coffee Club and Corner Kick Bar, according to Jan. 24 press release.
“As we were figuring out the best way to operate this and manage it moving forward, we wanted to stay local to Austin and make sure that we grabbed people that had done it successfully here, so we grabbed [ELM Restaurant Group], who is operating as Corner Kick out here,” McGlashan said in an interview with Community Impact Newspaper.
Additionally, The Pitch is centered around a common space with a 15-foot-by-9-foot big screen, and includes outdoor seating, a sand volleyball court, an event center, an outdoor stage and a two-thirds of a mile jogging trail around a 5-acre pond.
Karlin purchased the 300-acre site in 2011 and over the course of 10 years has developed it into Parmer Austin, a corporate campus with nearly 2-million-square-feet of buildings an tenants including The Home Depot, 3M, General Motors and Apple, McGlashan said. He said Karlin wants The Pitch to be a tool employers at Parmer Austin can use to recruit employees.
“As we looked at it, we [wanted] something that's authentic Austin, that's different, that doesn't really exist at other business parks, and is a differentiator as all these companies are trying to differentiate themselves for their employees,” McGlashan said.
In 2017, McGlashan said Karlin saw the opportunity to bring Austin FC to the site, and the club opened its St. David’s Performance Center in March 2021.
Greeley said with its variety of offerings, The Pitch is a one-of-a-kind amenity.
“This does not exist in Austin, but it also is something that does not exist in Major League Soccer circles,” said Greeley, the former president of Austin FC’s parent company, Two Oak Ventures. “There is no team in MLS that has a mixed use development tied to their training facility.”
As employees return to work in person after the COVID-19 pandemic and more events are held in and around Parmer Field, Greeley said the uses of The Pitch will develop organically.
“It really is meant to be an inviting space for everyone," Greeley said. "It's great for the corporate tenants; it's great for sports fans; it's great for soccer supporters; it's great for families."