The partners have launched an exhibition of their detailed plans to turn Television Centre into a mixed use development including office and studio space for the BBC, complementary entertainment and leisure facilities, public open space, offices, housing and a hotel.
Television Centre would be opened up to the public and the forecourt remodelled to include new retail, leisure and entertainment uses together with access through the site providing connectivity with the local area, including Hammersmith Park.
The BBC say they will continue to have a significant presence at Television Centre, with BBC Studios and Post Production returning in 2015 to operate three studios, and BBC Worldwide, the BBC’s commercial operation, moving into the refurbished Stage 6 building in 2014. This is a much slimmer presence than has historically been the case of course, with the BBC still moving staff away from White City.
The remaining office space would be aimed at occupiers in the creative sector. There would also be a variety of public uses, including a cinema, health club, restaurants and cafes. The listed buildings at Television Centre would be retained.
Stanhope and the BBC have established a joint venture company, TVC Developments Ltd, to deliver the project and to integrate the proposals into the wider White City Opportunity Area.
David Camp, chief executive of Stanhope Plc, said: “Stanhope is working in partnership with the BBC to deliver a publicly accessible mixed use remodelling of these iconic buildings and redevelopment of the adjoining land. We will be bringing new life into the site with new public routes, spaces and uses. We will be introducing a vibrant and exciting mix of new retail, leisure, office and residential uses whilst keeping and enhancing the famous original BBC buildings and retaining key operational BBC studios and office facilities on site.”
Dominic Coles, BBC Director of Operations, said: “This development will not only deliver a legacy befitting a site of such historical significance but also is part of a BBC property strategy which is maximising value for money for the licence fee payer and releasing fresh funding for programming making.”
Paul Monaghan, Director of Allford Hall Monaghan Morris, lead architects on the job, said: “This unique opportunity will see the creation of a masterplan which will open up this much loved site, and the iconic buildings set within it, to the public for the first time and reconnect it with the surrounding neighbourhoods.”
- Plot A – The current ‘Stages 4 and 5’ buildings will be remodelled and refurbished to provide retail, leisure and office space, called The Television Factory. This aims to be a new creative hub for businesses in the area that could house up to 3,000 people. The listed buildings and the remodelled forecourt, frontage and elevation of Television Centre from Wood Lane will be retained. The Forecourt will be remodelled as a large space predominantly hard landscaped for pedestrians, it is envisaged that a range of activities can take place including events such as filming, farmers markets and occasional concerts.
- Plot B – The ‘Inner Ring’ of Television Centre will be refurbished to provide space for a boutique hotel and a series of residential apartments. Helios Plaza, at the heart of Television Centre will be remodelled to enhance the setting of the Helios Sculpture and fountain by TB Huxley Jones. A new concentric courtyard will be shared with Plot C (the ‘Crescent’).
- Plot C – The ‘Crescent’ would accommodate five clusters of dwellings in ‘mansion block’ style buildings looking over Hammersmith Park or the new courtyard. The height of Plot C is kept to a lower level than the height of the ‘Inner Ring’ to give the existing prominence over the new.
- Plot D – The existing ‘Restaurant Block’ will be replaced with a new residential scheme designed by Duggan Morris. The intention is that this building will hold the northern frontage facing on to Hammersmith Park.
- Plot E – The sequence of buildings that replace the ‘Drama Block’ will enclose a central courtyard and are designed to maximise the amount of dual aspect accommodation. The building tiers down in scale in order to maximise opportunities for sun and daylight to penetrate into the central space. The developers say it also responds to the scale of the neighbouring streets and creates a ‘book end’ frontage to Hammersmith Park, at a similar scale to the new crescent building.
- Plot F – two rows of town houses would be located to the south of the site around a ‘Village Green’. These dwellings would provide family accommodation with private rear gardens. The scale and form of these buildings aim to complement that of the houses which back onto the site from Frithville Gardens.
- Plot G – The scheme proposes the demolition of the existing ‘East Tower’ so it can be replaced with a more slender and appropriately sited building. The footprint of this building is split into two elements which step up in height from the ‘Drama Block’ towards Wood Lane. The new tower would sit closer to Wood Lane to “engage the building with the wider urban context”. It aims to provide an urban marker, mirroring that of the masterplan for the extension to Westfield. The building is curved in plan which responds to the concentric layout of the site and also allows the route adjacent to the viaduct to be opened up.
- Plot H – The building on Plot H replaces the existing Multi Storey Car Park on Wood Lane and is designed by Maccreanor Lavington. The buildings would step up from the scale of houses in Macfarlane Road and re-introduce Macfarlane Place as a pedestrian route connecting through the open viaduct arch to the remainder of the masterplan.
- Plot J – ‘Studios 1-3’ would be refitted as ‘state of the art’ studio space and will continue to be operated by BBC Studios and Post Production (S&PP). BBC Worldwide would be housed in a new headquarters in a refurbishment of the ‘Stage 6’ building fronting Wood Lane, with the internal works designed by HOK. There would be approximately 1,000 new residential units and townhouses in total, including affordable housing.
The commercial accommodation is designed to achieve an ‘excellent’ BREEAM rating, while homes are designed to achieve Code for Sustainable Homes ‘level 4’.
The Television Centre site is 14 acres and was the former site of the 1908 Franco-British Exhibition. It officially opened in June 1960 and was designed by the architects Norman and Dawbarn and appears to be like a question mark in shape. The central ‘ inner ring’ of the building and the front flank of Studio 1 are Grade II listed as special interest and these listed elements of Television Centre will be retained and enhanced, including the instantly recognisable exterior view.
The site has been expanded over the last 60 years and there is currently 1.6m sq ft of existing buildings dating from the 1950s-1990s, and operates as one building from a services point of view. The site is designated for employment, media/creative and residential uses in the GLA’s White City Opportunity Area Planning Framework which also envisaged the opening up of the site.