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Animation Academy Moves to Church/Office Due to Condo Project

Due to a new condominium project, the Animation Academy, which was operating at 3407 W. Olive Ave., will now hold classes at the Burbank Association of Realtors offices and Trinity Foursquare Church, reports the DAILY NEWS. The location were the school use to be is now part of a 3.8-acre Media District site designated for a Platt Cos. project that will include 220 condo units, 20,000 square feet of retail and restaurant space, a church and a child-care facility.

"The education we provide is basically pencil and paper stuff and some animation and video assignments that require a video system that's portable," said founder/president Charles Zembillas. "It'll be a little bit of an effort to set up and break prior to and after class, but so far it looks like it's going to work out for us. By staying fairly light on our feet, we can still offer a quality education without the heavy equipment that we had prior to the move."

Started in 1998 in the back of a restaurant in 1998 with 20 students, the Academy has grown to educating up to 90 students per semester and helps them get jobs in the animation industry.

"Obviously, the overriding good is that we're going to revitalize this ugly lot," said Joy Forbes, principal planner for the city. "But the key is we like his type of business in the city and we are the media capital so we do have an economic development team that would be happy to work with him to find him another location in Burbank that would suit his needs."

Zembillas hopes to work a deal out with the developers to re-open the school on the site, but the space in not zoned for office or school space. Construction is expected to begin by the end of the year and to be completed by 2008.

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Rick DeMott
Animation World Network
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