New building allows for collaboration between communication departments

Sylvia Butanda

An online tour of the upcoming Belo Center for New Media allows students to virtually explore the facility and preview KUT’s new home.

The tour went online at the beginning of February and unveils the inner-workings of every main room of the center, which is expected to be completed by the summer and will open its doors on Nov. 1, according to the College of Communications’ website.

The Belo Center for New Media will house the five College of Communication departments, student services, organizations and will also be the location of the KUT Public Broadcast Center, Austin’s National Public Radio affiliate.

The Broadcast Center will be housed in an adjacent two-story wing of the Belo Center that will showcase KUT’s studios from the inside out, said KUT spokeswoman Erin Geisler.

The tour displays KUT’s new glass-walled, 72-seat performance studio which will be located at street level, allowing the outside public to watch the 300 annual in-studio performances.

The KUT wing will feature a floor plan that will bring together all employees in one cooperative area, Geisler said.

“KUT is currently scattered throughout three floors of the CMB, so moving to the Belo Center will allow everyone to work together and collaborate more,” Geisler said.

A community engagement room will also be part of the wing that will allow different organizations to hold their meetings, events and workshops there.

“From the university’s perspective, this is providing a gateway to this end of campus,” Geisler said. “From our perspective, KUT is serving the community and the University, so moving into the new building will help us connect more to the community that we serve.”

Michael Wilson, development director for the College of Communication, said the opening of the Belo Center will enable the college to provide departments and programs with the needed space to enhance teaching, learning and social interaction across communities.

“Collectively, our new complex will be the type of facility the University of Texas is best known for and will allow us to continue to recruit the best of the best in students and faculty alike,” Wilson said.

KUT’s broadcast center will make the College of Communication area a cornerstone on the western end of campus, Wilson said.

“With the open view of KUT’s studios you can also expect the college to be a beacon for those who appreciate the most trusted source for news, information and the Austin, Texas music experience,” Wilson said.

Printed on, February 7, 2012 as:Online tour gives peek of Belo Center