As it struggles to balance budget cuts without compromising quality of output, the BBC has put up for sale its iconic Television Centre in London.
The TV Centre, with its distinctive doughnut shape, opened on 29 June 1960, as the BBC's first purpose-built centre for TV production and is currently the base for BBC Vision and BBC News. A separate News Centre opened in 1998 at the front of the building.
The existing BBC Studios and Post Production business will continue to operate following the sale of Television Centre, either remaining on site or in a new location. The BBC plans to fully vacate the site in 2015.
Confirming the proposed sale, the BBC stresses that the key objective for any sale or partnership is to maximise the value of the site to the BBC and Licence Fee payers. To this end the corporation has engaged commercial property consultants Lambert Smith Hampton (LSH) and will be seeking expressions of interest from the market for either a conventional, freehold property sale or alternative proposals possibly based around a joint venture partnership.
Commented Chris Kane, Head of BBC Workplace: "Our key objective is to maximise value to the BBC. 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."