David Cudd's Reviews
Television Centre (TVC) is a special development. There’s so much to talk about. Where should I start?
I could kick off with the historical element of the development, the celebrities who have graced the former BBC HQ and continue to do so at the remaining three active film studios or the huge investments and improvements in the public realm. Maybe the outstanding facilities which have been delivered exceptionally or the commercial tenants who generate life, attract new people and helped in creating an instantly buzzing atmosphere in a previously undesirable and somewhat forgotten part of town.
I could begin by discussing the greater regeneration of the White City area, including the expansion of Westfield (now the largest shopping centre in Europe) or Berkeley Group’s new White City Living development, which will create a new five-acre landscaped park for the local community to enjoy. Or the master plan for Imperial College London’s new campus ‘Imperial West’, which includes 600 student units, research and development facilities, a commercial hotel / offices / retail / private residential in a 35-storey tower, a Research & Translation Hub and eventually 3000 researchers solving the challenges of the future. All lovely to hear if you’re an investor looking for a tenant for your Television Centre apartment.
I haven’t even mentioned the apartments, which have been conceptually designed to pay homage to the site’s history while delivering them in the contemporary way expected of a new build. Subtle touches include mosaic tiles (first seen in the lobby) which continually connect you as you move from the development’s communal areas and into your home (appearing again in your bathroom). The grand entrance lobby provides the friendly and helpful concierge team with a place to greet visitors and residents alike. All too often I’m greeted with a miserable doorman who’s keen to instate their key holding power on estate agents. Only smiles and helpfulness have I experienced at TVC.
The biggest complaint I’ve heard is the distance from building to building which I can understand although, in truth, the distances are significantly wider than a traditional London street. That being said I get it. Privacy or rather a lack of it from certain apartments has put some people off. Personally, it’s not such a concern given the distances are 22m (at their narrowest point) and considering the rest of what the development has to offer. The gym is arguably London’s best – I haven’t seen better. Operated by Soho House’s brand ‘The Cow Shed’ it’s refreshing to see a resident’s gym with a genuine buzz about it. Members of Soho House Group can use the facilities, but I don’t see this as a problem. What would you rather, an empty gym with just your next door neighbour for company. or a busy gym atmosphere with lots of people and energy? It’s a no brainer.
If I had to take a dig at the scheme in would be at Wood Lane itself (where the scheme sits) and the traffic build up – especially at rush hour. Not that it’s the developer’s fault. It’s particularly unpleasant at the moment as construction works on White City Living continue and make-shift pedestrian walkways narrow the road to uncomfortable levels. I’m a motorist so it’s annoying although if you don’t have a car the tube connections are first class. Central, Circle and District Lines are all within a two-minute walk.
A few honourable mentions go to the large break-out spaces, the business suite and the cinema room which, while in use, has an illuminated ‘ON AIR’ sign to guard from unwanted interruptions. Another classy touch which links nicely to the history of the site.
Living at Television Centre will cost you considerably more than an apartment on a street close by, it’s true, but the same can be said for any new build and there’s genuine value for money in design, facilities, and transport links. Rather than comparing value by whats for sale on the neighbouring street, it’s best to compare with similar new-build developments. In doing that I think all will see the real value here.
Please review the location of this development:
The local area is dominated by Westfield shopping centre and while this is convenient it’s not somewhere you’d want to visit everyday. The Westfield ‘antidote’ is essentially the new retail spaces in the commercial section of Television Centre which offers a good selection of restaurants including Homeslice (best pizza in the area), Kricket (delicious Asian fashion tapas) or the better known Bluebird Cafe. Within the next 12-18 months you’ll start to see the railway arches connecting Westfield to White City Living’s new park open with several boutique operators – or so that’s the plan.
Please disclose any commercial relationship to this development or developer:
I don’t have any