“Countdown studios” exit by mid 2017, party & sale.
ABC Director of TV is promising a great send-off to a grand lady next year.
ABC’s Elsternwick Studios, better known as the Countdown studios, look set to be vacated by mid 2017.
The Gordon Street building has been in operation since 1958 as home to many productions including Countdown, Bellbird, SeaChange, Adventure Island, The Late Show, Frontline, The Big Gig, The Gillies Report, Kath and Kim, Miss Fisher’s Murder Mysteries, Shaun Micallef’s Mad as Hell and Spicks and Specks. It sits adjacent to the Heritage listed Ripponlea Estate.
Next year ABC will finish completion on its expanded Southbank site in Sturt Street (pictured below) which includes 2 television studios, bringing Radio and Television under the one roof in Melbourne. Staff are already working in the newly-built extension while work continues.
Admin and production staff will move from Selwyn Street, Elsternwick, by April with the Gordon Street Studios to be decommissioned by mid year.
“We will celebrate its space. It needs to be given an appropriate farewell and have a good party,” ABC Director of TV Richard Finlayson told TV Tonight.
“But it will ultimately be sold with the money going to Australian content.”
However local Glen Eira council has previously noted the site also represents an important opportunity to potentially achieve additional open space, if it is kept out of the hands of developers.
“There will be a lot of interest in it, it’s a great site,” Finlayson acknowledged.