The Daily Times moves its office to Main Street
FARMINGTON — The Daily Times has moved from its North Allen Avenue building to a newly remodeled office a block south on Main Street.
The paper opens today at 203 W. Main St., and will maintain its normal business hours, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday.
The paper's printing press facility on North Allen will continue operations as usual.
The move solidifies the paper's commitment to the community, said Sammy M. Lopez, publisher of The Daily Times.
"Our move shows our commitment to downtown (Farmington)," Lopez said. "We took a building and remodeled it and it's a state-of-the-art facility."
Lopez said the paper is gaining market-share and improving its online presence. The paper's website — daily-times.com — drew 743,000 unique page views in December, he said. The paper's Sunday circulation is 10,991 papers, based on a two-year average, and an additional 6,650 people subscribe to the paper online, he said.
"That's powerful," Lopez said. "We have more readers now than we ever have in the history of the newspaper when you combine the online readers and the print readers."
Jaynes Corporation of Farmington completed the remodel work at the new building.
City Manager Rob Mayes said the city bought the old Daily Times building and surrounding properties from the paper last year and will use the land to renovate and expand the Civic Center, which abuts the paper's main offices.
Last spring, the city purchased the building at 201 N. Allen Ave. and surrounding properties for $850,000, according to The Daily Times' archives.
Following the sale last year, the city demolished two buildings that were part of the purchase — a building that had been a church at 207 W. Arrington St. and the former offices of the Four Corners Business Journal at 205 W. Arrington St.
Those buildings were demolished as part of a Civic Center expansion and renovation, a project that will be paid for by a convention center fee that the council imposed last year. The fee is imposed on hotel night stays and is dedicated by state statute solely for the development and expansion and operations of Civic Center.
The city plans to renovate the existing Civic Center, which shares the 200 block of West Arrington Street with The Daily Times' old main offices. The city plans to demolish The Daily Times building soon, Mayes said.
"Ultimately it will be a parking lot or part of the footprint for the extension of the (Civic Center) building," Mayes said. Architects are currently designing various plans for the project, he said.
In 1957, the paper moved to the building now owned by the city from smaller offices on Broadway, according to the paper's archives.
The first edition of the Farmington Daily Times was published Aug. 1, 1949, though it existed under different owners and names going back as far as 1894, according to the paper's archives.
The newly renovated Main Street building was originally a JCPenney department store. In more recent years, the building was the site of the city's chamber of commerce offices and the San Juan College reading room.
Mayes said the city was supportive of having the paper stay downtown.
"We worked really hard with The Daily Times to do all we could to encourage the paper to stay in the downtown area," Mayes said. "We consider The Daily Times an important institution in our community, and from our perspective, downtown is a perfect place for it to be. It's a win for The Daily Times and for our community."
James Fenton is the business editor of The Daily Times. He can be reached at 505-564-4621.