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An Old Hollywood studio lot, called Television Center, gets new owners

Television Center, a Hollywood movie studio that was once home to Technicolor's film-making laboratory
Television Center, a Hollywood movie studio that was once home to Technicolor’s film-making laboratory and Metro Pictures Corp., has been sold for $64 million.
(BLT Enterprises)

Television Center, a Hollywood movie studio that was once home to Technicolor’s film-making laboratory and Metro Pictures Corp., has been sold for $64 million.

The 6.4-acre complex on Romaine Street was purchased by BLT Enterprises, a Santa Monica real estate company that has been expanding into Hollywood. With the acquisition, BLT now owns more than 250,000 square feet of office, production and studio space in the neighborhood, including four soundstages.

“Some people may think we’re crazy [buying] in the middle of the pandemic, but we have been acquiring properties in Hollywood in the last few years,” said Robert Solomon, head of development at BLT.

The seller was a private partnership.

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Television Center has been renamed Hollywood Media Center to better reflect the emergence of Hollywood as a center for production of a range of entertainment products including streaming services such as Netflix, the buyers said.

Hollywood has emerged in recent years as one of the most popular office markets in the region with streaming giant Netflix leading the way to grab up vacant space. New office buildings that are behind studio gates have performed especially well.

The property is near Paramount and Sunset Bronson studios. It is surrounded by Santa Monica and Cahuenga boulevards and Cole and Willoughby avenues. The main entrance is on Romaine Street, which passes through the property.

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Hollywood Media Center has about 200,000 square feet of space for rent including Art Deco-style buildings erected in the 1920s by Technicolor for offices and its processing lab, which turned out such films as “Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs,” “The Wizard of Oz” and “Singin’ in the Rain.”

Current tenants include media, technology and entertainment companies, along with a Gold’s Gym.

The portion of the complex south of Romaine Street, now used for parking, was once the lot of Metro Pictures, Solomon said. Metro became part of Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer in 1924.

BLT may seek to develop the former Metro site, but hasn’t determined what might be built there, he said.

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BLT was founded as a logistics business and owns truck terminals, cold storage warehouses and other industrial buildings. After the Great Recession, it started acquiring properties that could be converted to more creative uses, such as offices.

Founder Bernard Huberman called the purchase of Television Center “a once-in-a-generation opportunity to acquire an asset of this scale in the Hollywood Media District, which is undergoing a renaissance with the convergence of media and technology companies.”


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