BBC Broadcasting House

Other development
Including Office, Public Realm use

Ormeau Avenue, BT2 8HQ

About BBC Broadcasting House

The site extends to an area of 0.48 hectares and comprises the Grade B1 Listed BBC Broadcasting House alongside its 1984 Studio Block extension which fronts onto Linenhall Street West and the 1975 Office Block extension which fronts onto Ormeau Avenue. 

Prior to Broadcasting House, the British Broadcasting Company (later the British Broadcasting Corporation) broadcasted 2BE (the call sign of the first official radio station to broadcast in Northern Ireland by the BBC) from a small studio located on Linenhall Street. By the mid-1930s the limitations of the Linenhall Street studios had become apparent. By mid-1937 it had been confirmed that the BBC had acquired a city centre site on Ormeau Avenue and that it intended to develop "Broadcasting House". James Miller, a Scottish architect, was asked to undertake Broadcasting House's design. 

Substantive building work on BBC's Broadcasting House began in 1939 and continued despite the outbreak of World War II. It was completed in 1941. Broadcasting House grew with the addition of an eight-storey administration block in 1975 and a new suite of studio and editing facilities in 1984. 

In March 2018, the BBC announced that it would invest £77 million into Broadcasting House to improve its infrastructure, efficiency and accessibility. This work was expected to take place between 2018 and 2023.

In June 2019, the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) submitted a planning application (LA04/2019/1498/F) proposing the redevelopment of BBC Broadcasting House to include internal reconfiguration & refurbishment of existing buildings (studio block, office block and Broadcasting House). The application also proposed an extension to the rear of Broadcasting House, a landscaped plaza fronting onto Linenhall Street, a new energy centre building, facade treatment to office and studio blocks, a new entrance onto Linenhall Street, new BBC signage and the removal of 7 no. on street parking spaces to facilitate the public realm treatment of Linenhall Street to incorporate a pickup/drop-off zone. This application was approved in February 2020.

In May 2020, BBC NI announced that it had halted plans to redevelop Broadcasting House. BBC Northern Ireland director Peter Johnson said the decision was taken in light of the need to protect the BBC's financial position and that the project will now be suject to review.

In June 2021, Tim Davie, the BBC's director general, announced that the BBC will spend £48m refurbishing Broadcasting House in Belfast and investing in its broadcasting technology in Northern Ireland. The BBC said the £48 million investment would go towards:

  • updating and upgrading broadcast technology, equipment and production spaces
  • reshaping the building to make it "an open, creative hub for staff and the wider creative sector"
  • opening the rear of the site with a publicly accessible plaza area, which is in line with Belfast City Council's vision for the wider regeneration of the Linen Quarter, where the building is located
  • allowing staff to work more flexibly between the office and home, with less travel between BBC bases, and investment in more environmentally efficient vehicles

The BBC announced that the planned central hub that would link existing building will no longer be developed as part of the new plans.

In July 2021, BBC Northern Ireland submitted a planning application (LA04/2021/1745/LBC) proposing a window replacement scheme to the eight-storey office block. This application was approved in September 2021.

In July 2022, the £48 million refurbishment of Broadcasting House commenced.

In April 2023, the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) submitted a planning application (LA04/2023/3097/F) and Listed Building Consent (LA04/2023/3059/LBC) proposing internal alterations, installation of ventilation louvres to rear facade, mechanical ventilation air-handling plant, ductwork connections, associated access, and maintenance area on the roof at BBCBroadcasting House.

Project Information

Start Date

July 2022





Planning References

Project Team


More Projects