Wednesday, 30 September 2015

BBC TV Centre Demolished

BBC Tv Centre being demolished. Photo: Eddie Morgan
In this photo by local resident Eddie Morgan, taken a few days ago, you can see the old BBC TV buildings on Wood Lane being demolished.

But wait, you say - aren't they listed? Well, yes and no. The building to your left is listed - that's the donut shaped main building, which is subject to a preservation order and will be saved.

But much of the rest of the site is coming down, to be replaced by posh flats and offices and - so it is said - a Soho House club with a rooftop swimming pool.

Like so much of the development taking place in Shepherd's Bush, the new buildings planned by Stanhope may be a beautiful new addition to our skyline - or not.  Even though the protracted planning process involves the submission of multiple documents (sometimes hundreds) to the Council, it can be hard for non-experts to understand just what is being proposed.

Stanhope Masterplan

For most of us, busy with other things - and generally lacking the expertise to fully understand architectural plans - we tend to cross our fingers and hope that the developers will do the right thing. Take a peek at the "Masterplan" at the Stanhope website above. It looks nice, as far as it goes, but what will it all really look like?

The developer in this case is Stanhope, and it's not like they haven't tried to imagine how the new development will appear. In fact, thanks to the magic of CG animation, they have built a virtual model of the new building, with a "fly-through" video which you can see below.

The fly-through of Television Centre was produced in February 2015 and, according to Stanhope, "provides an insight into what the development could look like when it is completed". The film "takes the viewer on a journey through the site, showing a regenerated and animated forecourt, leading to the famous and refurbished Helios plaza and, for the first time, on through to Hammersmith Park at the rear".

Over all, the plans do look nice, as far as one can tell.  And access to Hammersmith Park has got to be a good thing.  But the real question is - will Stanhope leave us something that will make our neighbourhood a better place to live, or will it be a blot on the landscape that we will have to put up with for decades?

Until it is built, we won't really know.


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