Burbank city officials approved a 113,760-square-foot office addition to the Nickelodeon Animation Studios lot on Olive Avenue this week, a move company representatives said would help streamline its operations and bring about 450 additional employees to the Media City.
Planning Board members voted 4-0 Monday to give developers Accord/BRO Members, LLC the go-ahead to build on a lot next to Nickelodeon's offices, which currently house 300 employees in 120,000 square feet on a 1.5-acre lot.
The animation network will then lease all of the units in the new building.
The approval, which also includes a new parking structure, is final unless an appeal is made to the City Council.
Board members said Nickelodeon, which has been at the location since 1997, has been a good neighbor throughout the years, and they are looking forward to seeing more space made for artists and voice-recording studios.
"This is a great project, it's great to have more of the company in one location where they can have that campus feel and camaraderie, a place where they can exchange ideas," said board member Doug Drake.
Clear glass vertical fins make up most of the office building's exterior design.
The proposed project also entails the construction of a 137,229-square-foot parking lot with 450 parking spaces.
Board chair Kimberly Jo said she was concerned that the concrete parking structure's design wound be bland compared to the office building's look and cited a section of the city's municipal code stating that those types of structures should have a similar architectural appearance if they're being built together.
"That's what we're looking for, whether or not the parking lot has a similar appearance," she said.
Jo proposed that a black mesh that currently hangs on a wall on the site's courtyard be wrapped around the new parking lot, an idea that Drake took issue with.
"I haven't seen drawings of how it could look or how it might potentially might be too much of a good thing," he said.
The board eventually agreed to have it hung on the two sides of the building that can be seen from Lake Avenue.
The project would require the demolition of an equipment-rental structure prior to construction, a phase that could begin as early as the end of this year, said Senior Planner Brian Foote.