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 AJR  The Beat

From AJR,   October 1999  issue

Suburban Sprawl   

With an eye on advertiser access, Gary, Indiana's Post-Tribune plans to move the bulk of its operation 10 miles outside the city limits.


By Lori Robertson
Lori Robertson (robertson.lori@gmail.com), a former AJR managing editor, is a senior contributing writer for the magazine.      


With an eye on advertiser access, Gary, Indiana's Post-Tribune plans to move the bulk of its operation 10 miles outside the city limits, to Merrillville. The new facility, to be up and running in the spring of 2000, will house the advertising staff and a large portion of the editorial and circulation staffs, says Editor Eileen Brown . Printing and distribution, as well as the paper's Gary reporters and some support staff, will remain in the downtown offices. The announcement garnered disparaging remarks from Gary Mayor Scott King , who called it "a bone-headed decision" in a Chicago Tribune article. The city has suffered economically since its steel-town heyday, and King sees this as a desertion. "They [Post-Tribune] editorialize about the virtues of smart growth and reinvesting in central cities, and now they're making a move that contributes to all the evils they opine against," he said. Brown responds by saying the 62,580-circulation paper simply wants to be closer to its numerous suburban advertisers and isn't really moving: It's keeping its building and will pay the same amount of city taxes. Plus, coverage of Gary and the size of the editorial staff devoted to the city have increased since she arrived a year ago. "They should judge us by the product and not by where our advertising staff is located," Brown says.