Nexstar’s WFLA debuts set stocked with technology and views of Tampa

Nexstar Media Group’s WFLA, News Channel 8, has completely revamped its studio home with a set design boasting large LED windows that take advantage of the station’s downtown Tampa location.

“The overall set is a modern interpretation of several elements found in and around the Tampa Bay Area,” notes Rachel Bulgrin of FX Design Group, the set’s designer and fabricator.

“As a Floridian who grew up just north of Tampa I wanted to incorporate not just what Tampa Bay Area has become, but bring in elements that would be familiar and inviting to its viewers.”

Along with the view, the set includes a variety of local touches, Bulgrin explains, “The shutters are a nod to the past, the Sunshine Skyway Bridge its present, and the technology designed in is the wave of the future.”

At 5,000 square feet and featuring a real staircase to the adjacent newsroom, the studio mixes high resolution and low resolution LED panels to layer views of the area with topical graphics.

“You see all those monitors and you go – those are monitors? But they come together and create this beautiful vision of what Tampa Bay looks like on any given time,” said anchor Keith Cate. “I think it gives us a good backdrop that viewers can look and say yeah, this looks like our Tampa Bay.”

Neoti supplied and installed the set’s LED displays using 1.87mm panels from its UHD series for the foreground areas and 10mm Eco Lite series for the background, wrap-around elements.

In the stand-up area, which includes layering of LED, three monitors can be used as singles or combined to form one large 16×9 display, depending on the story.

The set also includes a large weather pod and weather work area flanked by a touchscreen and 4×4 Philips narrow bezel video wall.

Digital Video Group supplied this video wall along with recent studio technology upgrades including Hitachi SK-HD1300 cameras, Fujinon lenses and CueScript prompters.

Don Weaver provided lighting design for the set.

Along with the set debut, WFLA updated its motion graphics package using the look also on-air at KOIN and WISH.

Correction: An earlier version of this story misreported the corporate relationship between WFLA and WISH. It has been corrected in the version above.