Houston Chronicle Saying Bye to Downtown, Heading for Just Inside the 610 Loop

The old Houston Post building inside the 610 Loop near the Southwest Freeway will become the new home for most all of the Houston Chronicle's operations, it was announced today.

Promising to develop a "state of the art" facility, the Houston Chronicle Media Group, publisher of the Houston Chronicle, La Voz, Chron.com and HoustonChronicle.com, is going to start the bid process for renovations of the new/old campus. It already runs its press operations, circulation, and sales out of that office.

A press release says " it will be exploring alternatives for its downtown facility" and whether that means sale or something else, we don't know. Some of the newsroom will stay downtown to cover business and government, Chron officials said.

"We are excited about creating a state-of-the-art media facility as part of the Houston cityscape," said Paul Barbetta, EVP and Chief Operating Officer at Houston Chronicle Media Group. "As we have changed with the industry, we feel a facility housing all employees across our diverse capabilities, including print, digital media and agency consulting services will allow us to better serve our readers and advertisers."

Other advantages to moving out: costs are higher in downtown locations; the Chron can both save money and maybe make a bundle by selling off its prime real estate.

Also, the Chron like most news publications has had significant cutbacks of personnel in the last few years (so it might be a bit empty knocking around that big old downtown building).

And at least for the employees, there should be free parking at the 21-acre facility out on the South Loop. There was for Post employees.

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