Times-Union to outsource printing operations
The Florida Times-Union announced plans Dec. 13 to print the Jacksonville daily paper, Monday through Saturday, in Gainesville, and its Sunday paper in Daytona.
The Times-Union is currently printed at the newspaper's central facility at One Riverside Avenue.
The change will occur in mid-February 2018.
Officials at the newspaper also indicated the Times-Union's remaining departments, including news and advertising, will be moving later in 2018 to new headquarters in downtown Jacksonville.
Times-Union President Mark Nusbaum said approximately 50 employees in the production department would be displaced as a result of the outsourcing.
He made the announcement to those affected at a 6 p.m. employee meeting.
"We are deeply indebted to those individuals who have helped us produce the daily paper here in Jacksonville over the years," Nusbaum said. "But our presses are obviously getting older, and to upgrade them or replace them would require a very, very substantial investment. For that reason, it makes financial sense for us to move in a different direction."
Nusbaum said the displaced workers would have the opportunity to pursue openings at other newspaper printing plants operated by Times-Union's parent company, GateHouse Media.
The Times-Union was purchased by GateHouse in October 2017, along with 10 other dailies across the United States, from the Morris family in Augusta, Ga. GateHouse operates more than 140 dailies.
The Morris family still owns the 18-acre site at One Riverside, and has indicated an interest in developing the property.
Nusbaum said that the Times-Union is focusing its search for new headquarters in downtown Jacksonville.
"It's where we need to be," Nusbaum said. "Downtown Jacksonville, and its revitalization, is a major source of interest to us here at the Times-Union. Also, much of our coverage is generated from central government entities, including City Hall, the County Courthouse, Jacksonville Sheriff's Office, etc. We want to be there, right in the middle of it."
Nusbaum said the Times-Union hopes to be in its new offices by the fourth quarter of 2018.
The Florida Times-Union has a daily circulation of 45,000 and Sunday circulation of 70,000. Jacksonville.com, the Times-Union's digital sister, has daily pages views of about 380,000, and unique visitors numbering about 1.9 million a month.
"We will continue our expansion in the digital space at a very aggressive rate," Nusbaum said. "But it is important to us to continue to serve our print readers at an exceptional level as well. We believe we can achieve this through these moves."