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The effective takeover of Wood Lane W12 — an address known to generations of viewers of BBC’s Blue Peter — by ITV was announced today.
It is the latest boost to a once run down area which has undergone a huge regeneration over recent years with hundreds of luxury flats built at the former BBC Television Centre, Berkeley’s White City Living scheme, and residential blocks next to the Westfield London shopping mall.
The Good Morning Britain and Coronation Street broadcaster said that the first tranche of 800 staff will occupy the Broadcast Centre building at White City Place this week. A further 1200 are due to move in by the middle of next year.
Take a tour of the newly revamped Television Centre, White City
In total ITV has taken 125,000 sq ft of office space on three floors previously occupied by BBC workers. It will be the first time in its history that all of ITV’s London staff will be located at the same site.
Several hundred ITV staff from ITV Daytime and Drama already work at White City Place or at the nearby Television Centre where flagship shows like GMB, Lorraine, Graham Norton and Jonathan Ross are filmed.
But today’s announcement completes the remarkable replacement of the broadcaster that once dominated W12 by its commercial competitor after more than 60 years.
The BBC built its first purpose buit production centre at White City — the famous circular BBC TV Centre known as “the doughnut” — in 1960. It is now apartments and a Soho House private members club.
A further collection of six buildings known as BBC White City opened further up Wood Lane on the site of the former White City stadium in 1990, followed by five more at the Media Village in 2004.
ITV is relocating all its London staff from their existing offices in Gray’s Inn Road and Waterhouse Square in Holborn to White City.
The BBC still retains some space at the Broadcast Centre, White City Place and Television Centre but its staff will be heavbily outnumbered by ITV workers.
Ian Jones, ITV’s director of workplace services and estates, said: “Over the next 12 months we will be moving all our London teams to ITV White City, joining ITV Daytime and Drama, who are already located in WestWorks, and our Studioworks team at Television Centre.
“It’ll be the first time we’ve all been together, creating a real hub for ITV in west London, and delivering new, smart ways of working for all our colleagues. We’re excited to be joining such a vibrant, creative community and bringing our distinctive ITV vibe to W12.”
White City Place was bought by Cadillac Fairview, the real estate arm of the Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan, in 2020.
Its European boss Jenny Hammarlund, said: “The decision by ITV to move all their staff to west London is an endorsement of the vitality and success of White City Place in attracting high quality and innovative world class businesses.
“White City Place is truly establishing itself as a creative innovation hub, with the likes of BBC, ITV and other media companies, alongside a growing cluster of leading life science businesses, including Novartis and Autolus.
Claire Dawe, director, asset management, at developers Stanhope said: “White City Place is already a fantastic creative campus with the BBC, ITV and other media businesses currently on site but the decision by ITV to relocate all their 2,000 staff in London to White City will increase the buzz and critical mass to make it a real centre of the media industry in London.”