Where Do Broadcast Studios Find Space?

August 29, 2016 / GlobeSt / Kelsi Marie Borland

Entertainment has long been a jobs driver in Los Angeles, but broadcast and recording studios are seeing construction challenges in this ever-changing industry, Michael McCormick of McCormick Construction says in this EXCLUSIVE interview.

Michael McCormick is the president and CEO of McCormick Construction.

The entertainment industry has long been a driver of jobs in Los Angeles, but changes in technology and the dearth of infill industrial supply is creating new challenges for the development of broadcast and recording studios. Michael McCormick, president and CEO of McCormick Construction, says that location and specific industrial product are the most important characteristics of a redevelopment site, but technology now also plays an integral role. The firm has worked on several broadcast and recording studio projects, including Westwood One/Cumulus Media, broadcast and recording studios for Nickelodeon’s Studio B in Burbank and CBS Radio in Los Angeles. To find out more about this niche of the entertainment industry, how developers today are finding projects in this competitive market and the challenges of building these spaces, we sat down with McCormick for an EXCLUSIVE interview.

GlobeSt.com: With Los Angeles’ high-density market, how are developers finding space for their broadcast and recording studio projects?

Michael McCormick: Demand for space is high, particularly in Hollywood, Burbank, Culver City and other media-centric areas in Los Angeles. Burbank, specifically, has become a hot spot for animation and digital content providers. The most sought-after building type for a studio is industrial, such as a warehouse, because they typically need to provide a “clear span,” be free of columns and have generous inside clear heights. As a result, many studio construction projects are also adaptive reuse projects. Larger studios, especially motion picture studios,

require extensive lighting grids, large, sliding “elephant doors,” and the ability to move bulk materials and large equipment using trucks and lifts.

Location is key. Studios should avoid locations directly adjacent to railroad tracks, busy street traffic or airports due to the external noise and vibrations. However; being in close proximity to transportation hubs can be beneficial.

GlobeSt.com: What are the unique requirements for constructing broadcast and recording studios?

McCormick: Having the proper acoustics is crucial for a studio. McCormick has performed work on various types of studios, but one of our technical specialties is sound transmission class (STC) requirements. Whether it is a recording or broadcast studio or a motion picture studio, each has a different set of requirements due to the sensitivity of the equipment and the content being produced…

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