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Wednesday, March 3, 2021

City Council: Fort Worth approves first Media Production Development Zone for Southside

Fort Worth and entertainment has become a common theme, and the city took another step forward in that area June 26 as the City Council adopted an ordinance designating the Southside tax increment financing district as Media Production Development Zone Number One in Fort Worth. The office would be at 305 South Main St., Suites 100-110.

The city is seeking approval from the Texas Film Commission for the zone, which would be the second one in the state. The only one so far is in Austin.

A Media Production Development Zone is designed to encourage development of permanent sites for moving image production.

Fort Worth is in the 19-county Metroplex Region recognized by the film commission, and this area could have as many as five zones if requested and approved.

The zone carries a two-year sales and use tax exemption.

“We have an increased focus on building a creative and collaborative community that can attract business opportunities and a talented workforce. Fort Worth has a growing presence in the film community as evidenced by new productions and economic impact as outlined by the Film Commission,” Economic Development Director Robert Sturns said. “By creating the MPDZ, we hope to continue to attract and grow our efforts in film production.”

Red Productions, owned by Red Sanders, is looking to relocate to a headquarters of over 7,600 square feet and add five jobs in the next two years and 15 over the next five years. Along with Red Productions, KCPFII Bryan LLC, newly created by Craig Kelly, plans to develop the project that would include backlot studios and a sound stage.

The businesses are expected to generate about $92,000 in net new tax revenue, with about $295,000 in net new state tax revenue.

Renovation of the building is expected to begin later this year and will take about six months. The space provides

edit bays, office space, and conference rooms for producers, production managers and editors, along with open co-working space for media-related and creative companies.

Part of the development will include Backlot Studios in Suite 110, a fully functional studio space for rent for film production, photography shoots, and scoring by media professionals.

Other locations in the proposed zone can be designated as Qualified Media Production Locations by the state and receive the same sales tax exemptions. There is a limitation of three locations allowed at any one time in a zone.

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