As the “Today” show took the wraps off its new set this morning, main anchor Matt Lauer was 1,700 miles away in Colorado covering the catastrophic flooding there. “Savannah, Natalie and Al nice to see you there in the new studio 1A. The scene here in Colorado is not good at all,” said Lauer.

As the show progressed, viewers got a peak at all the new elements, including one that arrived just in the nick of time the main anchor desk which now sits in the middle of the studio. It sits on a lazy susan and can have a variety of backdrops. Carson Daly also showed off the Orange Room, and Ryan Seacrest, who is in the middle of hosting NBC’s primetime game show Million Second Quiz, dropped by.

The mood dampened a bit in the 8:30 half hour as reports of a mass shooting at the Navy Yard in Washington, DC began coming in. “Today” reported the news at 9am. By then NBC O&O WRC was in continuing coverage.

Set designer Jeremy Conway lead a team of 200 people with a 30-day deadline. They got a toast at the end of the show.