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MGM/UA Headquarters to Be Launched : Entertainment Firm's Corporate Offices to Occupy Beverly Hills Site

July 05, 1987

Construction will begin Tuesday on the corporate headquarters of MGM/UA Communications Co., the entertainment company formed when United Artists Corp. bought MGM's motion picture and television production operations from flamboyant millionaire Ted Turner last year.

The $20-million structure, at the northeast corner of Wilshire Boulevard and Crescent Drive in Beverly Hills, will provide 114,000 square feet of office space for about 300 employees. A 150-seat screening room is included in the plans.

No film production facilities will be located on the site.

The facade of the new four-story structure, designed by Los Angeles-based architect Gin Wong Associates, will incorporate alternating bands of polished white marble spandrels and gray solar glass with rounded corners.

The design was chosen to create a soft, undulating profile instead of the conventional hard-edged office building, Wong said.

The building's most dramatic feature is a 50-foot-high cylindrical glass rotunda at the building's entrance. The rotunda will be supported by marble-clad columns and topped by a domed skylight.

The skylight area will be used for receptions and exhibits .

The building also will have three levels of underground parking for 383 cars.

As part of the project, MGM/UA is developing a public park on the northern section of land above the subterranean garage.

The company is donating the design and landscaping for the 12,000-square-foot park in conjunction with the Beverly Hills Department of Parks and Recreation.

Completion of the building and the park is expected by January, 1989.

MGM/UA Communications currently rents space in another Beverly Hills office building for its headquarters.

Lee Rich, chairman and chief executive of MGM/UA Communications, said the decision to stay in Beverly Hills reflects the city's "central location, long-standing connection with the entertainment industry and unrivaled support system for world corporate headquarters."

Peck/Jones Construction of Los Angeles is the project's general contractor. Interior designer is Neville Lewis Associates Inc. of Los Angeles, and the landscape architect is Fong & Associates Inc., Costa Mesa.

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