Studio and Renovation of CNN Center Turner Broadcasting System, Inc. (TBS, Inc.) today unveiled plans for the construction of a $37 million production facility on its Techwood campus and a $20 million renovation of CNN Center, one of Atlanta's leading tourist destinations.
In making the announcement, Terence McGuirk, chairman and chief executive officer of TBS, Inc. said, "Turner Broadcasting has been a partner in Atlanta's growth for more than 25 years. These new construction projects further demonstrate our company's continued commitment to our city."
In March, the company will break ground on a 127,000-square-foot post-production/studio facility, which will include a 20,000-square-foot studio, expected to be the largest all-digital facility on the East Coast. The projected building cost is $37 million, with an additional $15 million budgeted to equip the studio with state-of-the-art technology, including live virtual sets and HDTV. The building is scheduled to be operational by Jan. 1, 2000.
The facility will consolidate the post-production and studio facilities of Turner Productions, which performs the internal post-production/studio work for Turner Entertainment Networks and Turner Sports; the CNN News Group, excluding live news-related work and studio work handled at CNN Center; and World Championship Wrestling. Also in the production building, Turner will construct an 11,500-square-foot loading/shipping facility and an 11,000-square-foot central plant.
"With the new production studio, we are not only meeting the expanding needs of our existing networks but also setting the stage for the growth of new ventures here in Atlanta," said Alec Fraser, executive vice president, Turner Properties. "And we are confident that our renovation of CNN Center will significantly step up tourist traffic in the downtown area. We expect both of these projects to have a dramatic and positive impact on the city."
The $20 million renovation of CNN Center involves a complete makeover of the atrium and the relocation of the main entrance to Marietta Street, facing Centennial Olympic Park. The entire northside facade, including the entrance to the Omni Hotel at CNN Center, will feature an abundance of windows and a new, upscale restaurant with outdoor seating. The redesigned atrium will replicate the look and feel of a television studio, reflecting TBS, Inc.'s identity as a world leader in sports, news and entertainment programming. The shops and restaurants in the building and the CNN Studio Tour will remain open throughout the renovation, which will begin in August 1998 and is scheduled for completion in August 1999.
In 1970, R.E. Turner purchased Atlanta Independent UHF Channel 17, beginning TBS, Inc.'s presence in the city of Atlanta. Today, the company owns, leases or manages more than 2 million square feet of office space in the downtown area.
Headquartered at CNN Center in Atlanta, Turner Properties oversees the management of all facilities leased or owned by Turner Broadcasting across the globe. The 200-employee division handles facilities administration, new construction and renovations, property management and logistics, facility operations, maintenance, real estate, leasing and marketing. Turner properties leased or owned in Atlanta include CNN Center, the four buildings at the company's Techwood campus, Turner Second Generation child care facility, and offices at William's Street, Ralph McGill Boulevard, Turner Field and The Inforum.
Turner Broadcasting System, Inc., a subsidiary of Time Warner Inc., is a major producer of news and entertainment product around the world and the leading provider of programming for the basic cable industry.