FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. — The Arizona Daily Sun is shutting down its printing press and outsourcing the work to a facility in metropolitan Phoenix, the newspaper announced Wednesday.
The move will take place in mid-May, and the 20,000 square-foot building that also houses the newspaper staff will be put up for sale, said Colleen Brady, the Daily Sun’s publisher and advertising director.
In a letter to readers published Wednesday, Brady attributed the decision to the difficulty in keeping a more than 55-year-old press running and the need to stay competitive. The Daily Sun has been printed in Flagstaff for more than 80 years, including 26 at the current location off Route 66 on the west side of the city, she said.
“We do this with a heavy heart because of the dedicated production and press staff who ensured that we continued to produce quality publications,” Brady wrote.
The Daily Sun, like other newspapers, has downsized over the years. It stopped printing a Monday edition in 2012 and ceased print publication of other niche products more recently.
The newspaper also has had to implement layoffs in the editorial, circulation, advertising and production departments.
Brady declined to comment Wednesday on how the decision to outsource printing will affect several employees, some of whom have worked there for decades.
Charles Arms, a spokesman for Lee Enterprises, which owns the Daily Sun, said the company would not comment on the changes beyond what was in Brady’s letter.
The Phoenix-area facility that will print the Daily Sun is run by the Arizona Republic, part of Gannett Co.
The Daily Sun prints other newspapers in Arizona. Brady said the Daily Sun will retain those customers and continue delivering newspapers, including the Arizona Republic, the Wall Street Journal, USA Today and others, around northern Arizona.
Brady said once the Daily Sun building is sold, the remaining newspaper staff will relocate within Flagstaff.