The BBC at some stage this week will officially bring to market Television Centre, its famous studios in Shepherd’s Bush, west London.
There is a pretty good story here in The Guardian from a couple of weeks ago about the process – which will be managed by Lambert Smith Hampton.
Essentially, the Beeb will consider outright bids for the part-listed site or a joint venture partnership arrangement.
What is the Olympics connection? Well, the BBC’s involvement as the spearhead for “Creative London”, a 43-acre project anchored by Television Centre and its sites in Wood Lane and including sites owned by Helical Bar/Aviva, M&S, Westfield and Land Securities, and now Imperial College, is clearly shifting.
The Beeb’s retrenchment and decision to work on its own has seen the other parties push on with doing their own thing.
Creative London was seen as a new hub for media companies looking for modern space away from the traditional heartland of Soho and had one obvious rival in this respect – Hackney Wick’s 2012 Olympic media village. Both areas have clearly targeted similar tenants.
The BBC, I am reliably informed, has for instance approached Google about Television Centre. The Olympic Park Legacy Company has made no secret of its desire for the US group to take a look at the media village.
The Olympics landowners and developers will no doubt be watching with great interest which owner eventually emerges at Television Centre.
I know it is thought that the recent sale of the BBC’s Woodlands site to Imperial College has subtly changed the potential target audience for the area, from media types to high-end science workers and technicians based around the University’s new teaching, research and administrative facilities.
The battle for the Olympics site is still one of defining exactly what type of occupier it is most suited to. What happens at Television Centre is still likely to be an important factor.
* I have now been forwarded this press release from the BBC which has just gone live on its website.