A Look Back, A Look Ahead 

Mike Panagako

Reflections on the Seaport as we move into our next chapter 

This year, before becoming Ten Feet Tall, we moved our offices from the Seaport to Boston’s downtown waterfront. 

We’ve called the Seaport District home for ten years, so there’s certainly a lot we’re going to miss. As well as a lot we won’t (looking at you, Silver Line). 

Over the course of the last decade, the Seaport has changed drastically. But perhaps the most rewarding aspect of watching a modern neighborhood pop up around us was seeing all the brands and campaigns we helped develop on display, defining the neighborhood, and setting the tone for what’s to come. 

Ten years later, you can’t hop from steakhouse to steakhouse without bumping into a place, logo, or public space we didn’t have a hand in creating, from the Seaport's northernmost point (Fan Pier) all the way down to Black Falcon Pier, with millions of square feet in between. 


Naming our home 

The “World Trade Center Complex” was the first development in the area, once known as the “South Boston Waterfront.” 

We were hired to rebrand the complex, along with the Seaport Hotel, to create a singular business complex brand. “Seaport Place” became more than a brand to us; it became our home for a decade. We’ll miss it as well as the support and partnership over the years from our landlord, Pembroke. 

Breaking new ground 

Fan Pier was the first mega-development to break ground in the Seaport, and the brand we helped launch set the tone for a new, world-class waterfront. 

New neighbors 

Waterside Place and Park Lane added apartments to the neighborhood and further surrounded our offices with life and activity. 

A jewel rises 

With the neighborhood’s buildings mandated to a strict FAA-flat top of about 20 stories, the district started looking more and more like a rectangular box farm. That’s when Cronin Development dropped its plans for something unique: a dazzling piece of architecture. A tower that conformed to the rules without sacrificing design or beauty. 

The St. Regis Residences became the most significant and recognizable piece of architecture in a neighborhood so often knocked for its lack of creativity, proving that a little outside-the-box thinking could command record-shattering per-square-foot sales. 

Our work with St. Regis in Boston led to an ongoing relationship with Marriott Residential on properties including the St. Regis in Chicago and a Ritz-Carlton on the West Coast. 

Through it all, we learned to forgive Cronin Development for knocking down the agency’s favorite watering hole, the Whiskey Priest.

The art of possibility 

Today, one of the largest employers in the Seaport is Vertex Pharmaceuticals. While many people know of our work on national destination brands, it’s our life sciences and healthcare portfolio that is home to some of our proudest work. 

Today, Seaport Boulevard is full of vans connecting multiple Vertex locations that are wrapped in the corporate brand platform we created: The Science of Possibility. 

Vertex approached us as their first drug reached FDA approval and we were making the jump from Cambridge to the Seaport. This decades-in-the-making start-up was about to blow up, and we created a brand platform that would help them write the next chapter in their history. 

As the district grew, so did our roster of local healthcare, life sciences, and technology clients. And we’d be remiss not to mention the friendly neighbors within our office complex that we had the pleasure of partnering with over the years, including Nutter, Cabot, and AEW Capital Management. We’ll certainly miss commuting to client meetings via hallways and elevators. 


Our new office is on the most Boston of Boston streets: Broad Street, connecting Faneuil Hall with the Harbor. 

Broad Street is so quintessential that the Mighty Mighty Bosstones wrote a song about it. It’s only four blocks long, yet it has three Dunkin locations. And, taking the cake, it’s so Boston that our office renovations were delayed a week because Matt Damon was filming a movie just outside. 

So, we’ve traded the glass-and-steel boxes for granite slabs, cobblestones, and the red bricks of a gorgeous 1880s warehouse building. 

We’ll miss being in a location that has our fingerprints all over it, but our new front yard is the Rose Kennedy Greenway, which is yet another brand we created. It’ll greet us as we go about our daily routines. 

In a year of big change for our agency, we’re so proud of our new home. Won’t you drop by to say hello? 

About the author

Mike Panagako

Mike is Ten Feet Tall's SVP, Strategy, with a long career in commercial real estate development before joining the agency. Mike is well-versed in all aspects of economic development/real estate, construction, hospitality, and construction and related industries.

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