Sunset Studios’ first U.K. site intends to offer twenty-one sound stages, 9 workshops, 7 production officers, a daycare and a gym, planning documents reveal.
The film and TV studio facility, which is a co-development by Sunset Studios owners Hudson Pacific Properties and private equity firm Blackstone Group, is being built in Broxbourne, Hertfordshire. Hudson Pacific and Blackstone purchased the 91-acre site, which is approximately an hour’s drive from central London, for £120 million ($167 million). The site is now set to become one of the U.K.’s largest film and media complexes.
Now, documents submitted to the local council by planning and development consultants CBRE show the full vision for Sunset Studios, which will be Hudson Pacific’s first international expansion.
The planning documents show that Sunset Studios hopes to demolish existing structures on the site, which include a former dairy and a motor car workshop, and build 21 sound stages, nine workshops, 7 production offices and staff amenity facilities including a gym, daycare and food hall.
There are also plans to create a 30,000 metre squared backlot, 2 multi-storey carparks and a substantial open space that will include landscaped areas and a pond, plus a mobility hub catering for a bus stop, taxis, limousine drop off and pick ups, electric buggies for on-site use, electric car charging and valet parking.
Meanwhile, some protected (listed) buildings on the site will be restored and put back into use.
Sunset Studios, who, in the U.S., have housed productions including “La La Land” and “When Harry Met Sally,” have said the U.K. space will create over 4,500 jobs for Broxbourne and ploughing over £300 million ($417 million) annually back into the local economy.
“The proposed development will be fundamental in ensuring the U.K. responds to the opportunity to become world-leading in film and high-end TV production over the coming years,” writes CBRE’s director, Hannah Blunstone, in the planning application. “With the development there is also the opportunity to bring the listed buildings on the site back into use and deliver numerous social, economic and environmental benefits to the Borough of Broxbourne and the wider area, including employment opportunities, the creation of new public open space and significant inward investment in local business and infrastructure.”
Erik Thoreen, senior vice president U.K. for Hudson Pacific Properties said: “We are thrilled that after months of extensive work with the local planning authority and engagement with the local community, we are submitting our planning application to Broxbourne Borough Council. This campus will be one of the largest and highest quality film and TV studio complexes in the UK and provide economic benefits to the community for decades.”
James Seppala, head of Blackstone Real Estate Europe, said: “This is a big step forward in our plans to bring world-class film and TV production to Broxbourne. We’re thrilled by the prospects for local job creation and economic growth this campus will bring, and we look forward to working with Broxbourne Borough Council and all stakeholders to make this exciting plan a reality.”
Local residents will have an opportunity to respond to the planning application after which the council’s planning committee will make a decision about the plans.
The U.K. is currently experience a boom in film and high-end TV production, with a proliferation of new studios opening across the country, including Sky Studios in Elstree.