WMA digs Beverly Hills

Tenpercentery's on the move

After more than half a century in its current offices, William Morris is moving, though not very far.

While other entertainment firms have been picking up stakes and heading west to Century City, the tenpercentery is staying put in Beverly Hills.

New HQ will be less than two blocks away from its current offices, on Beverly Drive just north of Wilshire Boulevard.

Gotham-based developer George Comfort & Sons will construct a building for WMA on a site that currently serves as a parking garage.

Percentery plans to move into the space in early 2009.

WMA, which will not own the building, instead leasing from Comfort, will be the sole office tenant in the 201,000-square-foot building, with room for retail and restaurants on ground level.

Site is across the street from the future site of the Montage Hotel, also being built in place of a present public parking facility.

Both the luxury hotel and William Morris’ new digs will have several levels of underground parking, some of which will be open to the public.

Morris move will allow the agency to house its entire staff under one roof; current setup splits the agency between two buildings on either side of El Camino Drive, just south of Wilshire.

Percentery will continue to own both buildings and plans to lease them out as office space, as it does with a third BevHills building it owns adjacent to its current HQ.

New building is being built to conform to environmentally friendly standards set by the U.S. Green Building Council. Recycled materials will be used as much as possible, including construction materials and even office furniture, and everything from the lights to the air conditioning and bathrooms will be designed to conserve energy and water.

Plans also include a screening room that will seat 180-200 people.

Fresh digs are the first for William Morris since 1955, when it first moved into what’s now called One William Morris Place, as that block of El Camino was dubbed in 1998 by the City of Beverly Hills in honor of the firm’s 100th anniversary. In all, WMA has had a presence in BevHills for nearly 70 years.

“It was not only important for us to remain in Beverly Hills,” William Morris chief Jim Wiatt said in a statement, “but to make sure that we occupy a building that puts us all under one roof and is healthy for our employees and for our environment.”

While WMA is staying put in Beverly Hills, CAA and ICM are both ditching the conclave for Century City. Other showbizzers taking residence there include law firm Barnes Morris Klein Mark Yorn Barnes & Levine as well as the revamped MGM.

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