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A closer look at the BBC's new £1 billion headquarters

A closer look at the BBC's new £1 billion headquarters

Nearly all businesses try to reduce the costs of running their work or office space, but a new report has revealed that the BBC's new headquarters are costing an extremely high amount to run - three times more than similar UK commercial properties, in fact.

According to research conducted by the National Audit Office, the corporation's new Broadcasting House is currently costing an annual figure of £89 million to run - that's £13,000 per member of staff, The Telegraph reports. Not only is this considerably more than similar buildings throughout the country, it is also 49% more than comparable offices in London.

Furthermore, the running of this property portfolio is currently costing 7.3% of the licence fee - a figure which should stand at 6%.

With this in mind, the National Audit Office has called for the BBC to strive for better value for money by maximising use of space within the building, stating that although progress has been made, there is still some way to go. Also, due to the ever-changing nature of the industry the BBC will need to keep some flexibility in its leasehold and freehold portfolio so that it can adapt to the ever-changing needs of the organisation.

In defence of the findings, a BBC spokesperson has said that the office is "not comparable to any other buildings. It makes around half of all BBC output, houses the biggest newsroom in Europe and broadcasts globally 24 hours a day every day of the week, which requires unique levels of technology and security."

Despite such high running costs, the building has faced a number of maintenance issues, such as loss of internet connection, broken lifts and out-of-order toilets. This has led one worker - Andrew Wiggins - to suggest that "much of the £1bn was spent on making the building look a certain way, without much care taken to spec all of its facilities to be hard-wearing and actually usable on a daily basis." With 6,000 staff to accommodate these issues are becoming a major problem.


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