BBC begins TV Centre sale

bbc tv centreThe BBC Television Centre, a West London icon, has gone on the market.

The BBC has said it is inviting bid proposals from people looking for a conventional, freehold property or those interested in a joint venture. The latter, they say, could see parts of the listed 50-year-old, Norman & Dawbarn designed building preserved in a “hub for creative businesses and a visitor destination”.

white city opportunity areaThis could be provide an anchor for a new creative quarter, which is currently being trailed as part of the Mayor of London’s White City Opportunity Area consultation, a vision for the employment land north of Westfield London, and east of Wood Lane. This project, previously called “Creative London”would involve various landowners including Helical Bar, Aviva, Marks & Spencer, Westfield, LB Hammersmith & Fulham and Imperial College, now owners of the former BBC site at Woodlands, just north of the A40.

Helical Bar and Aviva are reported to have engaged Eric Parry Architects to submit a planning application for the Dairy Crest site in the area, with plans for 1500 homes and 186,000sqm of commercial space.

The BBC says the main aim of the sale, first announced in 2007, is to “maximise the site’s value to the BBC and licence fee payers”. The 14-acre site, where 5,000 staff are based, is expected to be empty by 2015.

Chris Kane, head of BBC Workplace, said: “With high investor demand for commercial property in London and a shortage of landmark sites as distinctive as Television Centre, we anticipate strong competition for both conventional and innovative proposals.”

Richard Deverell, W12 programme director, said: “Television Centre has played an extraordinary and central role in the history of the BBC, which will not be forgotten.”

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