Description of BBC Broadcasting House
Broadcasting House is the first ever purpose-built broadcast centre in the UK. It was built in 1932 for the BBC, eight years after the corporation first came into existence.
The redevelopment of Broadcasting House means that for the first time all the BBC's national and international radio, television and online journalism, including those of the World Service, will be housed under one roof. The new Broadcasting House is also the headquarters of BBC Radio and Music.
The redevelopment has been carried out in two phases. Phase one comprised the refurbishment of the original 1932 Grade II* listed Broadcasting House, which continues to be the home of national radio; and the construction of the new East Wing, now home to the BBC's Arabic and Persian television services and BBC London. It was completed in 2005 and officially opened by The Queen in April 2006.
Phase two is the addition of a brand new extension to provide a spacious and modern broadcast centre with state-of-the-art technology for all BBC journalism. Construction work is now complete and the technical fit-out has begun, in preparation for a phased move into the new building throughout 2012.
New Public Spaces
A range of new public spaces have been created at the heart of the new complex, opening up the building and creating dialogue between audiences/visitors and BBC staff.
In the central space between Broadcasting House and the new East wing is a wide open piazza large enough to be used as an open-air theatre, where, for instance, events could be staged under the BBC Introducing banner. Or else it could be simply a place to linger and relax in - away from the bustle of nearby Oxford Street. It complements the formal performance space of the Radio Theatre within Broadcasting House itself.
In addition, there is a new public walkway running through the centre of the site, which provides a foyer for the Radio Theatre, and which opens onto a café/bar where the public and BBC staff can mix. Along the length of the walkway and bar is a glass-fronted window which provides a unique view into the BBC Newsroom.
The News Hub
At the heart of the building is the newsroom, a column-free space, surrounded by technical areas and day-lit by the eight-storey high atria above. About twice the size of the largest floor available in Television Centre, this will be one of the largest live newsrooms in the world.
At any one time, over ten million people across the UK will watch or listen to output from the new Broadcasting House, and every week at least 150 million people worldwide will tune into the BBC World Service networks.
From Heritage to Hi-Definition
Top architects, designers and artists have been involved in shaping the new Broadcasting House, in order to create a truly inspirational workplace for the organisation that aims to be the most creative in the world. Throughout 2011, the BBC's technology team will be installing and testing the digital technology needed to produce the TV, radio and online output from the new building.
The new development has been financed by a public-private partnership involving a special bond - so no licence fee monies have been used for the construction.
Architect: MacCormac Jamieson Prichard (Phase I)/Sheppard Robson (Phase II)
Construction: Bovis Lend Lease
Management: Land Securities Development
Interior design: HOK