Just like the city it calls home, the new studio of NBC News‘ “Meet the Press” explores the dichotomy of modern versus classical in a town that still leans heavily on storied traditions while coexisting in a world that’s constantly hitting refresh on the flow of information and conservation.

NBC News Studio N1

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After over 60 years broadcasting from the studios of WRC, the network’s owned station in Washington, D.C., NBC execs made the pivotal decision to move “Meet the Press” and the network’s bureau closer to the heart of the city — paying credence to the mantra of “location, location, location.”

In the district, location is important — but so is “access, access, access” — so the network opted to start exploring ways to expand its downtown presence even before a January 2019 fire that heavily damaged its ancillary studios on the upper floors of an office building.

The debut of “Meet the Press” from the space culminates a months long process of moving both on camera and behind the scenes areas across town.

Once the decision was made to create a new “hub” in the heart of the district and NBC secured the additional space, the network turned to the design team at HD Studio to fill the newly acquired real estate with multiple broadcast and work environments — including this ground-level studio for “Meet the Press.”

While Studio N5 on the eighth floor and the bureau newsroom on seven embrace clean lines and LED video walls, so popular in broadcast studios today, the first floor is decidedly different.

“We wanted to create a space … that speaks to NBCU News Group’s commitment to Washington-based coverage. It was important to us to balance the federal-style architecture with the unique modern finishes and latest technologies to break from the generic feel of many modern workspaces. Plus, creating expansive windows across the first floor studios and newsroom also reflects the importance of journalistic transparency,” said Marc Greenstein, SVP of design and production at NBC News and MSNBC.

To facilitate that concept, HD Studio’s team created a bit of a backstory about the new home for “Meet the Press” — it was a “found” space that had been expanded and modernized over time, noted Bryan Higgason.

“We always looked for ways to pit something very modern against something very classical,” he noted in an interview with NewscastStudio.

The ’roundtable’ area — most of the LED video walls in the archways can be moved to reveal real windows. Photos courtesy of Niel Galen and NBC News.

The main roundtable area for “Meet the Press” was enclosed with paneled walls and archways painted in a colonial blue discovered through research into historic architecture dating back to the founding of the country.

This gives it the basic structure of a traditional colonial room — complete with framed pictures and faux marble and wood floors.

In many ways, it’s sort of opposite the “open concept” that’s become all the rage in both home and office designs of today — but also a reflection of the design sensibilities of another era.

Not only does this go a long way in creating a perfect area for pointed questioning and interviews, but it’s a recognizable, consistent space viewers can expect to see each week.

These chats take place around a simple circular table with flared based sits on a circular custom carpet with the “Meet the Press” logo ringing it — somewhat reminiscent of another famous (albeit oval-shaped) area rug found elsewhere in the city.

Though the pandemic will likely mean “MTP” has to rely on social distancing and remote interviews for the time being, the table is designed to sit up to four guests in addition to Chuck Todd and can be shot in the round.

HD Studio nixed the idea of using traditional hidden “camera ports” (disguised through open-backed bookshelves or dark corners of the studio) that are often mainstays of roundtable setups and instead paid close attention to blocking the camera positions as well as the evolving nature of the show’s format.

Cameras will still show up on air from time to time, but that’s also a nod to the connection to be old and new — and the flow of conversation from around that table out into the world, noted Higgason.

Meanwhile, the gently curving archways that box in this area are decidedly traditional but have the very modern option to be filled with seamless 1.56mm UHD LED panels from Neoti that can be used to showcase stylized imagery of D.C. landmarks or be used for remote interviews.

What’s not immediately visible, according to Higgason, is that all of these panels can be moved around behind the blue walls to reveal the real glass windows beyond as well as combined with an oversized, gold web-like sculptural gold map of Washington’s highly recognizable “spoke” street layout.

This configuration was inspired by Studio 1A in Rockefeller Center, which has its home base between two perpendicular walls of glass, giving the network a high profile “billboard” of its presence while also giving passersby a peek into the process of newsgathering.

Just off this area is a more open, modern feeling “glass box” space with two perpendicular walls of glass overlooking the 45-workstation newsroom beyond, perhaps another nod to 1A.

The main desk in this space is another blend of old and new — its basic shape is that of a colonial or federalist style desk — with its gracefully bowed legs and other “carved” details.

However, it’s been finished in a bold bright red that’s found throughout the new D.C. facility as well as the network’s New York headquarters (and decidedly not very traditional).

It also includes integrated glass panels with color-changing LED edge lighting effects and frosted bars — another motif common found, for example, in the header element in the seventh-floor newsroom and throughout Studio N5 on eight.

While a truly antique piece could be emblazoned with a gold seal and leafing, this desk has custom, internal lit reveal lines and an NBC peacock in the center.

Shooting the red desk through one wall of windows gives viewers a dramatic view of an intricate barrel-vaulted ceiling with dark coffers that runs down the center of the newsroom, also inspired by neoclassical and federal architecture — a shot that started to show up during NBC and MSNBC coverage of the inauguration.

The rear wall of the newsroom is finished in the same bright red as the desk and equipped, directly behind the studio window, a 2×2 video panel array that provides a prominent digital canvas for branded or topical graphics on both one and multi-shot setups from the desk.

Interestingly, the designers didn’t set out with a red, white and blue color palette in mind for the space, said Higgason.

The team initially was more focused on integrating visual continuity to other NBC studios, but quickly discovered red went a long way in warming up the look — and it ended up being a great way to blend in a bit of that modern take on design with otherwise traditional looks.

A more traditional anchor desk layout situated with glass on both sides and a dramatic barrel vault above.

Meanwhile, on either side of the central barrel vault is a more modern interpretation of that architectural element — suspended, internally lit rectangular frames arranged in grids, another example Higgason points out as a bridge between old and new.

The team also tucked thousands of LEDs in the coffers, cornices of columns and in other architectural details throughout the space, giving NBC the ability to create a multitude of moods and looks that spreads beyond just studio lighting cues.

Getting these ceiling elements installed involved detailed work with HVAC and electrical contractors to get all of these systems as close to the structural ceiling as possible — giving the space the most possible using ceiling height (about 14 feet), said Higgason.

HD Studio also had to work around numerous structural columns that hold the building up — spaced about every 20 feet or so in a grid pattern throughout the space. One also, located in the studio area, also had to be relocated to create a larger footprint.

Of course, columns are no stranger to neoclassical, federal-style architecture, so they were ultimately worked into the design.

To refine the look, however, the columns were clad with a stone-like finish and “etched” with symbolic words such as “Honesty,” “Truth,” “Wisdom” and “Tenacity” — all meant to stand for, both literally and figuratively, the foundations on which journalism is based on.

“It felt important to provide reminders for what the people in that room do and speak to the qualities of the people delivering the news,” explained Higgason.

Staffers will also be able to look down for other reminders of their mission to facilitate conversation between the public and elected officials — numerous quotes about the free press and its relationship with the government are adhered to the floor.

One of the most obvious things about this text, however, is that it doesn’t line up with the rather grid-like layout of the rest of the space — instead, they’ve been aligned to roughly form spokes reaching out from the Capitol grounds.

“The idea is that the people in there are listening to what is emanating from that buildings,” said Higgason.

Also outside the studio is an open space that includes a combination of green room and gathering spaces for guests and workers alike.

An open area outside the studio includes a green room and large NBC peacock ‘bench’ installation.

Rather than just rely on traditional seating, HD Studio came up with the idea to use a top-down view of the NBC peacock logo as a multifaceted seating area complete with faux marble bases.

Each “feather” is a separate segment of the installation and topped with one of the corresponding six colors found in the iconic logo.

Although COVID-19 likely means gathering in the area (as well as the other planned communal meeting areas throughout the newsroom) might not be leveraged right away, Higgason says it will be interesting to see how staffers and guests end up gravitating to it and sparking additional conversations.

NBC News Studio N1

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“For more than seventy years, “Meet the Press” has been the place where presidents, policymakers, foreign leaders, and those in power have come to speak directly to American viewers,” said Todd. “This year, we will continue to be the gold standard of Sunday public affairs programming with the same sensibilities and mission, only now from a 21st-century studio with the latest technologies and broadcast capabilities.”

Project Credits

Set Design – Bryan Higgason, Paul Benson and Sid Wichienkuer of HD Studio
Lighting Design – Niel Galen of The Lighting Design Group
LED Displays – Neoti
Fabrication – blackwalnut
Systems Integrator – BeckTV

NBC News unveiled a new and expanded version of Studio N5, one of its Capitol Hill studios that were heavily damaged in a January 2019 fire at the building, on Dec. 12, 2020, as two new shows launched on the network.

The studio is on the eighth floor of 400 North Capitol, a building that also houses studios for Fox and C-SPAN.

NBC opted to tear down a wall and make the 8th-floor studio about 250 square feet larger.

MSNBC’s ‘Cross Connection,’ ‘Sunday Show’ fill screens, video walls with colorful graphics

Inside the space, HD Studio – led by Bryan Higgason with Paul Benson and Sid Wichienkuer – created a multi-venue and multi desk studio packed with Planar LED video walls and color-changing set elements as well as multiple references to the “staggered” horizontal bar motif that seems to be a recurring design theme at the D.C. facility — having shown up the header element in the NBC News Washington, D.C. bureau newsroom flashcam position on the 7th floor.

Against the exterior wall, two large windows afford views of the United States Capitol dome separated by a vertical LED ribbon and features metallic knee walls with internally lit horizontal bars.

Camera right of the window is a video “alcove” that includes the intersection of two perpendicular video walls, while the left and right side edges feature”wraparound” corners.

NBC News’ new D.C. bureau newsroom appears behind MSNBC live shot

The one nearest the window has the advantage of being able to display graphics or branding on the narrow vertical strip, forming, in a sense, an LED mullion.

When shot this way, this allows for branding and a real, live view of the Capitol, like was done on both “The Cross Connection” and “The Sunday Show,” the first two MSNBC shows to use the space.

In this shot of ‘The Cross Connection,’ anchor Tiffany Cross is shown with a real window view of the Capitol behind her, with the far edge of the wraparound LED installation on the right side of the screen — making it possible for NBC to brand this impressive view.

On the opposite side of the window is a triptych of large-screen monitors with internally lit frames and surrounded by a metallic wall with horizontal accents. The corner between this wall and the windows also features a large square column created with wood tones and additional horizontal accents.

The two-panel venue inside of Studio N5.

There is then a bright red structural column that segues to a final venue — a two video screen array with a similar frame and wood wall with internally lit accents and flanked by two flat, metallic walls with two edge-lit installations of oversized NBC peacockoutlines.

The studio also includes at least two desks that can be wheeled around the floor that features a grid of darker and lighter wood tones.

The studio’s pod-shaped desk features a metal and glass base with a color-changing ring with three thinner red bands in front of it.

The larger desk features frosted banding and the NBC peacock (likely selected so it could be used across NBCUniversal properties if needed).

The video walls also obviously give the space flexibility for multiple NBCU brands and shows to use the space, including ones that temporarily need to originate from Washington.

Saturday “Today” has been originating from Washington during much of the coronavirus pandemic using the set originally built for “Meet the Press,” which has played host to other MSNBC shows after the fire, though this was reduced as the pandemic worsened.

The pod can be leveraged for both a single person in a standing or seated position (albeit with a higher chair). It likely could also be used for small, two-person interviews (though likely not in the era of social distancing).

Meanwhile, the larger desk can fit up to five but was also used on the debut shows for a single anchor.

The Lighting Design Group lit the new studio space led by Niel Galen with blackwalnut fabricating. Planar supplied CarbonLight CLI 1.5mm pixel pitch LED for the various video walls.

In addition to N5, there is also an empty studio on the floor below. NBC is leasing space on both floors for studios and workspaces — with the 7th floor being additional space it picked up after the fire. The network also occupies part of the first floor with what will be the new home of “Meet the Press” as well as additional office space.

That studio is expected to debut in January, according to sources.

NBC first announced plans for the expanded presence in the building in July 2019. The network’s old bureau and studios for “Meet the Press” and inserts were located inside the same building as its owned NBC and Telemundo stations.

Sept. 18, 2020, was the last day of most network operations at the Nebraska Avenue building (namely “Meet the Press” and Saturday “Today” continued to use the latter’s studio).

The “MTP” studio was also used for shows displaced by the fire, though much of that changed when the coronavirus pandemic hit.

On Sept. 21, 2020, NewscastStudio obtained an internal memo from NBC News management that also included a photo of one of the new work areas built inside the North Capitol Street building. That workspace is on the first floor, according to sources.

SNY Studios at 4 World Trade Center, the home of the New York Mets, has one of the most unique settings for a broadcast studio anywhere. Located on the 50th floor of 4 World Trade Center, the studio offers breathtaking views of Manhattan below. For all its glamour and excitement, though, the skyscraper venue presents challenges when it comes to lighting broadcasts.

Having enough output during the day to stand out against the open-air background without bouncing light off windows is essential to making the studio’s system work; so too is having solid low ends when broadcasting at night. Mike Grabowski of the Lighting Design Group met these and other challenges at the state-of-the-art SNY 4 studio with help from over 300 CHAUVET Professional Ovation fixtures.

“SNY’s Studio 42, numbered after baseball great Jackie Robinson, has a unique environment because it’s up so high,” said Grabowski. “Unlike other windowed studios in New York, which are located on the first or second floor, this one is 50 stories up, so you have a lot of open sky. Given the location of the studio, we needed fixtures that are great at the high end and able to produce a lot of clean bright light for daytime shows. Then at night, we wanted those same fixtures to have solid low ends at about 10 foot-candles, so we could light the set while still having all the twinkling lights of the city be visible in the background.”

The output and low-end capabilities of the Ovation fixtures were not the only features that made them invaluable in this installation. Grabowski also placed a premium on their color rendering capabilities.

“There are two other studios in this complex besides Studio 42,” said Grabowski. “Both of them are numbered after Mets players: Studio 31 for Mike Piazza and Studio 41 for Tom Seaver. “Everything here is sports themed, so color fidelity is essential. We need to reproduce sports team colors like Jets Green and Mets Orange. It can’t be kind of like those colors, it has to be those exact colors. So, we need a great deal of finesses in our lighting, which is exactly what the Ovations have delivered.”

SNY’s lighting system utilizes 316 Ovation E-910FC ellipsoidal fixtures, 24 of which have 19° lenses, 50 with 26° lenses, 191 with 36° lenses and 51 with 50° lenses. “The Ovations are distributed throughout all three studios, so they fill a very wide variety of roles,” said Grabowski. “They make up all of the talent light and many of the scenic accents. Every highlight on the metal panels in Studio 31 (the Mike Piazza studio) is created by an Ovation fixture. Really, you can’t look at a shot on SNY without seeing something that is driven by the Ovation fixtures.”

Studio 31 serves as a “chameleon” at the station, notes Grabowski. Serving a variety of functions, it is painted in neutral grays and neutral metal accents, but through its lighting can turn from authentic Mets Orange to Jets Green or any other color depending on programming requirements. The design in Studio 41 is more directly driven by the look of Citi Field, home of the Mets.

“We need to reproduce the colors and accents of the stadium to bring that flavor into Studio 41,” said Grabowski. “The Ovations gave us this capability. What makes this even more impressive is that a lot of the scenery we want to show off goes to the ceiling or pretty close to it, so short yoking is a must.”

Also, a must in this project was that all fixtures in the three studios be powered by LED engines. “We knew we needed to go all LED, because of the amount talent positions and surfaces in the room,” said Grabowski. “Our lights needed to be workhorses that didn’t produce excessive heat. The Ovations did this, plus they have a full spectrum of color, which allows us to pivot more easily and move between lighting scenery and talent, all while meeting the needs of this very unique broadcast setting.”

You’ll have to excuse the media and content team at the Vikings Entertainment Network (VEN) for feeling like kids in a candy store. Have you seen their new home?

This summer, the Minnesota Vikings are placing the final, dramatic exclamation point on the complete reboot of their franchise: Twin Cities Orthopedics (TCO) Performance Center. First came U.S. Bank Stadium, then came the first NFC North title in six years, and now comes this stunning new practice facility in Eagan.

It’s jarring to recall that, not that long ago, this franchise was in the crosshairs of relocation. Now it has one of the most impressive headquarters in all U.S. professional sports. And media and video production is a significant piece of the pie.

The Minnesota Vikings’ Bryan Harper, Allan Wertheimer, and Jordan Struck inside the new TCO Studios at the TCO Performance Center in Eagan, MN, the new headquarters for the NFL franchise

The crown jewel of the new media facilities is TCO Studios, an eye-popping set that rivals many studios in any end of the sports-media business. It features four shooting areas: a traditional anchor desk, an informal area with four lounge chairs for deeper conversations among talent and guests, and two standup positions — one with an 86-in. touchscreen, the other with three slim vertical video screens.

The studio is filled with Sony F55 cameras equipped with Fujinon lenses, features a cutting-edge acoustic wall that lifts to open up to a 170-seat theater for a live audience, and is fully flexible and customizable (lighting, backdrops, set-piece positions) for any show, client, or sponsor.

It’s an awe-inspiring site for anyone who’s ever worked in sports television.

“When it first started taking shape,” says Bryan Harper, VP, content and production, Minnesota Vikings. “I found myself coming down here a couple times a day just because I wanted to look at it.”

The control room — which operates TCO Studios, the radio/podcast studio, the practice-field videoboard (a 1080×600 15HD-pixel-pitch Daktronics board), and the full IPTV system throughout the complex (installed by VITEC) — is designed to replicate the control room at U.S. Bank Stadium in Downtown Minneapolis. According to Allan Wertheimer, senior manager, production, Vikings, that was done purposefully to allow seamless staff training and make it easy for new members of the team to get accustomed to the equipment by using it on a regular basis.

A Ross Carbonite production switcher anchors the infrastructure at the front bench, with Ross Xpression as the graphics engine. An Abekas Mira provides playback support with eight channels, and the team has left room for growth to add slow-motion replay. For now, it can rent that gear and easily plug it into an available position. The entire media center is built around a robust Evertz router.

The Vikings worked with numerous key partners that helped TCO Studios produce its feats for the eyes. Provost Studio — a high-end, boutique design firm that has worked with the Chicago Bears, Cleveland Browns, and soon the Detroit Lions — played a chief role in design of the studio area. It also helped future-proof and properly plan the build to ensure that every element of the final project was considered.

Alpha Video served as integrator, with the Vikings receiving counsel from SH Acoustics on the cutting-edge wall that separates the 170-seat theater from the set; Lighting Design Group, which set up an LED system that allows customization of the set to serve even non-Vikings clients; Chicago Scenic, which provides the set’s dramatic backdrops (right now, it’s a view of the Downtown Minneapolis skyline); and Primeview, which supplied the various screens that appear on the set, including a 3×3 video wall behind the main desk, a monitor wall behind the couch area, and the 86-in. touchscreen.

The facilities are yet another example of how sports teams are investing in becoming, essentially, their own media companies. Whether it’s game day or any other day, the possibilities seems endless in this new playground.

“It could be everything from a full-on production to just IPTV,” says Wertheimer. “We’re so much more than football, sometimes it can be easy to forget that we work for a football team.”

Planning for these studios began three years ago. Harper and Wertheimer credit their colleagues at the Chicago Bears and the Dallas Cowboys — whose studios and facilities at Halas Hall and The Star, respectively, are standouts — who opened their doors to tours and helped the VEN team learn from their experiences.

“We had a vision ,” says Harper, “but, at the end of the day, it comes down to support from ownership, [to] the fact that they love our content, they love what we do, they care about it, they care about our fans, and they want to give our fans the best opportunity to engage.”

The team at Vikings Entertainment Network understands that with these amazing facilities certainly comes an increase in expectations, both internally from ownership and externally from fans.

In addition to a seemingly endless stream of content from web, social, and OTT platforms and department programs, VEN also creates six television shows for linear partners KMSP (the local Fox affiliate) and Fox Sports North (the local RSN).

Although Harper acknowledges that 2018 will be a growth year, plans are in place to introduce new content. He sees the biggest areas for growth in live social media and in podcasting. A notable addition, however, will come on the traditional linear side: plans are in place for a live show that will air on KMSP this season on Thursday nights prior to the start of Thursday Night Football, which, this year, moves over to Fox Sports. The show will be Vikings-specific and preview the upcoming weekend’s Vikings game and serve as lead-in with a local flavor to that night’s national telecast. And as it happens, the first game in the Fox Thursday Night Football package has (you guessed it) the Vikings visiting the Los Angeles Rams on Sept. 27.

So, as plastic is still being pulled off new corners of TCO Performance Center this summer and that new-studio smell is wafting warmly to everyone at VEN, the excitement is clear. But make no mistake about it: the fun is just getting started.



NewscastStudio Announces Winners in 2017 Set of the Year Contest, Honoring the Best in Scenic Design for Television

The annual awards honor the best design and technology in television with winners from NBC, ESPN, Fox Sports, Netflix and Tencent.


LAS VEGAS, April 9, 2018 /PRNewswire/ – NewscastStudio, the trade publication for broadcast industry professionals involved in production, design and engineering, has announced the winners of its 2017 Set of the Year competition — an annual contest that showcases the best in broadcast design, technology and lighting from organizations across the globe.

“This year’s awards honor broadcasters from across all formats and styles of presentation, truly capturing the changing world of broadcast,” said Michael P. Hill, publisher and founder of NewscastStudio. “This year’s contest was also updated to reflect the changing state of the industry, with a new category devoted specifically to on-set technology and video walls.”

This year’s Set of the Year awards were judged by a panel of 15 industry veterans with over 200 years of combined experience in broadcast design, production design and the broadcast industry.

Clickspring Design took home the most accolades, with five total honors, including two awards for work completed for Tencent (腾讯体育), a leading technology and internet company based in China.

Other winning broadcasters included ESPN, Fox Sports, NBC News, Cox Media Group, Gray Television and Netflix.

“NBC Nightly News” from Clickspring Design took home the National category honors, with New York’s Spectrum News NY1 from Jack Morton Worldwide awarded the top honor in the Local News category.

Internationally, Suzhou TV’s (苏州电视台) Media Center from Clickspring Design was the judges’ pick, while the design for Fox Sports’ coverage of Super Bowl LI from JHD Group won in the Special Event category.

Tencent’s NBA studio took home the top honors in the Sports category and the Augmented Reality/Virtual Reality category, with design from Clickspring Design and graphics by Girraphic Park with graphics technology from Vizrt.

Meanwhile, James Pearse Connelly’s studio for Netflix’s “Bill Nye Saves The World” took top honors in the Entertainment category.

The Set Technology category, a new addition to the awards program this year, included winning work from Devlin Design Group at Cox Media Group’s WJAX in Jacksonville, Florida, where the video wall usage was honored, integrated by Advanced. Clickspring Design’s usage of curved, tracking LED video walls in ESPN’s Studio Z, home of “Outside the Lines” with Bob Ley and “E:60,” also garnered honors, with integration by AV Design Services.

“LED video walls continue to dominate broadcast design — and designers are now faced with the challenge of finding innovative ways to use them,” said Dak Dillon, editor of NewscastStudio.

The Lighting Design category, which focuses purely on the lighting of a broadcast studio, saw two awards for The Lighting Design Group. The winning work includes “Megyn Kelly Today,” an entertainment show airing on NBC, and New York’s SNY, a sports network covering the New York Mets and Jets.

Financial services firm William Blair’s Chicago-based set from Provost Studio won the Webcast category, which honors work designed primarily for usage in online streaming productions.

For the reader’s choice Fan Vote, which garnered nearly 20,000 votes, readers picked FX Design Group’s work for WCTV in Tallahassee, Florida, a Gray Television station.

The complete list of winners, including the judges’ picks for honorable mentions, is available online at The winners were announced at the 2018 NAB Show in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Media Contact

Jason Marks
Phone: (415) 915-8855

Additional Resources

Full Winners List

Contest Details and Background

Video of AR/VR Category

We do things a little differently this week, interviewing Mark London, VP of Systems.

Celebrating its 20th anniversary, Fox News has taken the wraps off its much anticipated two-story streetside studio that has been designed as a glittering homage to the newsgathering process in the heart of downtown New York City.

“Our two-level 6th Avenue studio is home to FNC’s 2016 Election coverage, which features display technology and scenic capabilities unrivaled in the industry. This new state-of-the-art technology will enhance our programming for many years to come,” said Warren Vandeveer, SVP of engineering and operations at Fox News.


The new studio, christened Studio F, occupies the streetside space that was once a FedEx Office store at the corner 47th Street and 6th Avenue, also known as the Avenue of Americas, and it provides sweeping views of the facade of the News Corp. building and neighboring courtyard, as well as views up 6th Avenue past Radio City Music Hall and toward Central Park.

“The studio was really an opportunity to make a bigger statement for Fox News in New York City, only a block from Times Square,” said Jim Fenhagen, EVP of design at Jack Morton PDG.

The zenith of the new studio is a piece dubbed the “video chandelier” — a 14-foot diameter ring of LEDs that is mounted on intricate hoisting systems that allow it to be raised and lowered anywhere between the floor and the 30-foot ceilings in the space, with the displays powered by Vizrt.

The chandelier, which is created from NanoLumens’ NanoWrap panels with a 3mm pitch, is perfectly aligned with a circular video screen embedded in the floor, upon which the talent can walk.

newstudio1Video chandelier in Studio F. Photos courtesy of Fox News.

The flowing shape of the chandelier is mirrored in the Leyard 1.6mm 32×9-foot video wall tucked under the balcony, which itself is fronted with a curved video ribbon. The balcony makes a strong architectural statement by wrapping around the vertical space of the video chandelier, creating a striking contrast in the otherwise rectangular space.

Above, on the second floor, is an additional anchor location which can use the backdrop of either the street view or, when positioned halfway down, the video chandelier.

This space also includes an interactive touchscreen that is tied to the mezzanine level’s larger 21-foot Leyard video wall, allowing talent to virtually move imagery, through a bit of TV magic, from the touchscreen to the other sections of video wall.


The second floor is accessed through a sculptural glass stairway and will eventually feature a glass box elevator. The staircase is backed with a nearly 30-foot tall video tower comprised of panels, giving the network unique storytelling opportunities when used in conjunction with the stairs.

Down on the main floor, which is fully visible from the sidewalk, are two additional anchor desks that can accommodate a variety of seating configurations and can be moved around the space for any number of shooting options, with Fox News making full use of them for its election night coverage.

The windows, which were outfitted with a shade system for light control, also contain a special glass that can instantly go from translucent to opaque, depending on the needs of the studio.

The windows also added significant lighting challenges for the team at The Lighting Design Group.

“Having glass on three sides of a broadcast studio gave us huge daylight control challenges. It’s been a very hectic six months. It’s also resulted in an amazing studio that the network and all the consultants should be very proud of,” said Mark London, VP of operations and systems at LDG.


Since the studio is built in a part of the building that was originally meant to be retail space and not a TV studio, the windows are broken up by large structural columns, which have been clad in LED panels that add additional branding and storytelling opportunities.

Although the studio is making its debut for election week, it is a permanent installation, and both Fox News Channel and Fox Business Network will make use of it. The exact details have yet to be finalized, as the network is heavily focused on its election coverage.

For election night, an adjacent storage room has been dressed to serve as an additional reporting venue, and the network has brought in special lighting and installed a large video screen for crowds who gather outside the space.

From both inside and out, Fenhagen’s design strategy centered around creating a vibrant, eye-catching and dynamic landmark destination.

“Besides making it a practical news studio that both the news channel and business channel could use, in my mind I imagined it as a tourist attraction — sort of like the dancing waters in Las Vegas,” Fenhagen said.

With its impressive number of video screens, movable parts and exciting opportunities for future versatility, the new Studio F is set to become one of the most visible broadcasting spaces in Manhattan.

Project Credits

Scenic Design by Jack Morton PDG:

Jim Fenhagen – EVP, Designer
Camille Connolly – Sr. Designer and lead
Larry Hartman – Sr. Designer
Catherine Carriere – Associate Designer/Project Manager
Evan Hill – Assistant Designer/Project Manager

Illustration Dept:
Chris Maroney – Sr. Illustrator
Greg Park –  Illustrator
Adaer Melgar – Illustrator
Erik Nevala-Lee – Illustrator
Molly Hellring – Illustrator

Drafting Dept:
Catherine Carriere
Chris Boone
Evan Hill
Connor Munion

Environmental Graphics:
Shelline Vandermey
Raeford Dwyer

Producers & Admin:
Meredith Murphy
Ruth Shorten
Amanda Dwyer
Tiffany Erwin

Lighting by The Lighting Design Group:

Dennis Size –  Vice President of Design
Mark London –  Vice President of Operations and Sytems
Carolyn Szymanski –  Senior Project Manager
Tony Siniscalo –  Systems Project Manager
Mark Janeczko –  Lighting Designer
Alex Kyle-Dipietropaolo –  Assistant Lighting Designer
Kate Groener – Technical Project Coordinator
Jon Goss – Gaffer
Lesli Tilly – Gaffer

Fabrication by Showman Fabricators

AV Technology and Integration by WorldStage and Diversified

Architect: Gensler

General Contractor: Benchmark

Engineering: AMA

Sound Consultant: Acoustic Distinctions