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Daily News to Move Most Offices to Woodland Hills

September 10, 1986|ALAN GOLDSTEIN | Times Staff Writer

The Daily News, the San Fernando Valley newspaper based in Van Nuys for 75 years, said Tuesday it will move most of its editorial and business offices west to Woodland Hills early next spring.

Now housed in a cluster of seven buildings, the newspaper will transfer 700 of its 1,000 employees, including its editorial, advertising, marketing and finance departments, to a two-story structure in the Warner Center area of Woodland Hills.

Remaining in Van Nuys are the printing presses, some circulation operations and a news bureau. Thomas E. Griffiths, vice president for marketing, said the move is intended to relieve cramped working quarters and to consolidate operations.

Employees were told about the planned move at two morning meetings, held at a nearby American Legion hall because there was no room large enough at the newspaper's current headquarters. The announcement was greeted with applause.

Crowded Offices

Daily News offices are so crowded now that, for instance, reporters have to go outside, cross an alley and enter another building to go from the newsroom to the paper's library.

Griffiths said Tuesday that there are no immediate plans to move the Daily News' printing presses or to buy new equipment. Industry executives have long said the paper needs to modernize its printing facilities.

The Woodland Hills building, located on 4 1/2 acres on Oxnard Street east of Canoga Avenue, was acquired for $8.35 million by Cooke Properties, a real estate operation of Daily News owner Jack Kent Cooke. Cooke, a sports and media mogul who once owned the Los Angeles Lakers, bought the Daily News from the Tribune Co. last December for $176 million, outbidding at least three other suitors. At the time, he said he planned to move the newspaper to a new headquarters.

Until being acquired by the Tribune Co. in 1973, the Daily News was known as the Valley News & Green Sheet. It was published four days a week and distributed free to 276,000 homes in the San Fernando Valley. Tribune Co. installed new management and transformed the paper into a suburban daily. The Daily News said its daily circulation as of March, when the last audit was taken, was 148,133 newspapers, sold mainly in the Valley and neighboring areas.

Added Floor Space

The Daily News' new home has 132,300 square feet, 47% more floor space than it has in Van Nuys.

The new building was bought from Terminal Data, a maker of equipment that converts documents to images for storage on microfilm or magnetic disks. The company plans to move its headquarters from Woodland Hills to a larger Simi Valley facility by year-end.

Some real estate brokers said the Daily News got a bargain price for its new property. "If they got it at that price, they stole it," said Howard Zarett, a commercial leasing specialist in Woodland Hills.

Times staff writer Daniel Akst contributed to this story.

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