Developers plan to build a $450 million film studio on Santa Monica Boulevard just west of the Hollywood (101) Freeway, it was announced Tuesday.
Bain Capital Real Estate and Bardas Investment Group have submitted plans to the city of Los Angeles to invest $450 million to develop a five-acre site at 5601 Santa Monica Blvd. The multi-story complex would feature four 19,000-square-foot sound stages, a 15,000-square-foot flex stage and a 90,000-square-foot “creative village” of bungalows located above the bustle of Hollywood.
The two companies formed a joint venture in 2019 to acquire, develop and operate office and other production space in the content and media industry, with a focus on the Los Angeles market.
“The increase in demand for new content and limited existing studio and production space is generating competition in the market,” said David Simon, Bardas founder and managing principal.
Plans for the Echelon project include 350,000 square feet of creative space located within two mid-rise office buildings. The owners would rent space to as many as five content creators at a time.
“We believe the intense growth from the digitalization of content presents a compelling opportunity to create a uniquely integrated platform that partners with tenants to develop an unmatched experience,” said Joe Marconi, a managing director at Bain Capital Real Estate.
The companies also announced the launch of Echelon, which they tout as “the real estate industry’s first dedicated content media real estate platform that will serve as the brand for the joint venture’s investments.”
The previous owner of the 5-acre parcel planned to build a housing and retail complex, but Simon told the Los Angeles Times he thinks a studio is a better use for the site in the current market.
Demand for studio space is growing amid the explosion in streaming content, especially now that COVID-19 restrictions are being lifted across the state, allowing for the widespread resumption of filming activity.
In March, the owners of CBS Television City in the Fairfax District announced a $1.25 billion expansion and improvement of the historic production facility — calling it a “comprehensive framework to allow for a state-of-the-art modernization.”
Hackman Capital Partners, which operates the 25-acre facility at Beverly Boulevard and Fairfax Avenue in partnership with The MBS Group, said the planned expansion will include increasing the number of sound stages to a minimum of 15, up from eight; new production office space and support facilities adjacent to stages; new production base camps, and above- and below-grade parking; additional studio office space; and preservation of existing facilities.
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