As reported in the Athens Banner-Herald, the University of Georgia’s Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communication has plans for a multi-million dollar studio renovation for its new Master of Fine Arts in Film, Television and Digital Media program.
Donated funds will be paying for the $3.75 million project, including nearly $2 million in construction, according to information UGA officials submitted to the state Board of Regents in advance of the board’s monthly meeting.
UGA will not sign a construction contract until the full $3.75 million is in hand, according to the paperwork.
Regents will also review recommendations for hiring one of three Atlanta design firms for a 525-bed dorm for first-year students that is planned for Baxter Street.
Last month, University System of Georgia Chancellor Steve Wrigley approved a staff ranking of the top three firms out of 20 who applied for the residence hall commission -- Beck Architecture Georgia at the top; Thompson, Ventulett, Stainback & Associates; and, Collins Cooper Carusi Architects.
The new residence hall has a $49.9 million budget, including construction costs of up to $40.3 million. The new building will allow UGA to expand the size of its first-year class “and provide ‘swing space’ as UGA continues to renovate or replace other residence halls on campus,” according to the university’s request.
The building’s facilities will be a public-private partnership.
The new MFA program, which the regents approved last year, will be operated by UGA in conjunction with the Georgia Film Academy and Pinewood Forest, a residential development under construction in Fayetteville next to Pinewood Atlanta Studios and its 18 sound stages.
If the regents’ approve of the studio project, the plan would be to renovate almost 6,000 square feet in UGA’s Journalism Building.
Once equipped, first-year students in the new MFA program will use the space to learn about technical aspects of video and film production including cinematography, editing, lighting, audio production, and writing, directing and producing movies.
In the first part of the two-year program, set to start this fall, students will study at UGA. In their second year, they’ll move into Pinewood Forest and work with the Georgia Film Academy and industry professionals.
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