BBC Wales takes possession of new building

Central Square Photo credit: Emma Videan
Central Square Photo credit: Emma Videan

By Emma Videan

BBC Cymru Wales has officially taken possession of its new headquarters in Cardiff. The £100m building has been built upon the site of the previous bus station and makes up part of Central Square. It is located next to Cardiff Central train station and marks a period of regeneration for the city.

The building is particularly historical for the BBC as the first facility to use live IP Technology. Many of the BBC workers will be moving from the Llandaff sites, which are roughly double the size of the new site. Despite this downsize, the Llandaff sites are no longer fit for purpose, with outdated technology and run-down premises. This site is planned to be redevloped into housing.

The award winning Foster + Partners designed the building and were funded by Legal & General. Although it has now been handed over to the BBC, it will take a further 18 months for all of the broadcasting technology and fittings to be put in place. This means that it won’t be the workplace of some 1000 BBC staff members until the end of 2019.

However, it is not just the BBC that will benefit from this transformation, as the building will also house some S4C staff and even give the opportunity for some workers from the independent sector to benefit from the new building and technology available. In total, the broadcasting centre will contribute over £1billion to the economy of the Cardiff City region over the next ten years.

The regeneration of Central Square began in 2014, and One Central Square is now fully occupied. Two Central Square is still under construction but will be home to Cardiff University’s School of Journalism from September 2018. Internally, the area is made up of several floors and in total it measures to over 155,000 sq ft. It is nearly 1.5 times the size of the Principality Stadium pitch. The area is also designed to reuse rainwater that will be enough for 27,000 toilet flushes.

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