ESPN On Track for Downtown Broadcasts in 2009
DOWNTOWN LOS ANGELES — The Times today takes a look at ESPN's plans for their space at LA Live. The sports broadcaster is building two studios in the complex, and will be moving the late Sportscenter out here when work is completed in Spring of 2009.
The five-story ESPN building that is taking shape will house an ESPN Zone restaurant on the first two floors and two television production studios with digital control rooms on upper floors. One studio will become home for the late-night edition of its signature "SportsCenter" that now is produced on the busy Bristol campus. ESPN also will house its 710 radio station studios next door in an office building now under construction.
... ESPN's L.A. facility will incorporate perches in the upper floors where cameras will be able to get a bird's-eye view of downtown, including the pedestrian plaza off Chick Hearn Court that fills up with people whenever there are events at Staples Center and the Nokia Theatre.
As the piece mentions, this is a highly technical build-out. Once the building construction itself is done there will still be a long process to fit the space with all the latest in broadcast gear, hence the Spring 2009 open date. ESPN's involvement in this project is important for more than just its potential to show off Downtown L.A. The move is really a balance shift for sports coverage that is traditionally very east-coast heavy.