Daily Archives: October 7, 2008

Mesa Tribune joins Arizona Republic with changes, staff cuts

[Source: Lynn Ducey, Phoenix Business Journal] — The Phoenix-area media environment continues to change with the announcement that a long-standing daily newspaper will become a free publication.  On Monday, The East Valley Tribune announced that it will cut 142 staff positions, move to a free four-day-a-week print publication, and shutter both its Tempe and Scottsdale offices.  The reductions comprise about 40% of its entire staff, with many cuts to be in the editorial department. Reporters, photographers, copy designers, and others were among those affected.

The company made the announcement Monday, but employees have about three months until the cuts take affect in the new year.  That also is when the new product will make its debut.  Executives said the aim is to focus the print edition on the towns of Gilbert, Chandler, Queen Creek, and Mesa. Reporters will continue to produce content for the Tribune’s Web site seven days a week.

Meanwhile, The Arizona Republic debuted a redesigned print product in recent days and earlier this summer revamped its Web site.  The Republic’s parent company, Gannett Co. Inc., also recently announced some restructuring in its newspaper operations, and in August announced it was eliminating 1,000 positions companywide.  

The East Valley Tribune is owned by Irvine, Calif.-based Freedom Communications.  The company owns 33 dailies and 77 weekly newspapers including The Orange County Register and The Daily News Sun in Sun City.  [Note: The year-over-year drop in paid circulation among several metro Phoenix newspapers was highlighted in this blog entry.]

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This November, be a Principal for a Day in a Phoenix school

The City of Phoenix is looking for individuals who are willing to serve as Principal for a Day in a Phoenix school, November 17-19.  If you or someone you know might benefit from learning more about what’s really happening in our schools, please let them know about the program.  Everything you need to know is available online here.  Sponsors include the City of Phoenix, Merrill Lynch, Arizona Diamondbacks, Greater Phoenix Chamber of Commerce, and Valley Leadership.

Idea of the Day: Raise property values by going to a wine bar?

From time to time, we’ll throw out an “Idea of the Day” culled from sources here in Arizona and elsewhere.  And this one comes from Tim Halbur of Planetizen who notes that certain retail establishments raise property values.  Let’s take a gander:

CoolTown Studios looks at a recent study in Portland, OR that shows that certain retail establishments — cafes, movie theaters, wine bars — increase property values in neighborhoods by up to 30%.  “Their study concludes that property values within a block and a half would be affected accordingly by the following businesses:

  • Neighborhood theater: 14-30% higher property values.  Some positives cited by the study include an increase in pedestrian traffic (safety) at more hours of the day, and the fact that such theaters have no parking which encourages a more local crowd.  Neighborhood theaters also tend to play avant-garde, foreign and indie films, which attract more creatives, which then attract higher home values.
  • Specialty grocery store: 20% higher property values.  One explanation could be that because people will pay a bit of a premium for healthier groceries, they also have the income to pay a premium to live nearby.  Then again, who doesn’t want to live within walking distance of their favorite grocery.
  • Wine bars: 11-21% higher property values.  A quiet third place, something many people wouldn’t mind living near.”
For more information, click here.

Make a Difference changes name to HandsOn Greater Phoenix

[Source: Rhonda Oliver, President/CEO, HandsOn Greater Phoenix] — This year Make A Difference celebrates its 15th anniversary.  Make A Difference is part of a vibrant network of 370 affiliates that serve as hubs for civic involvement and volunteerism.  Our network is the key lever in this nation’s service movement, and as such, it’s important to unite with sister organizations around the country in both name and scope of services.

It is with great pride that we announce that Make A Difference is now HandsOn Greater Phoenix.  Please know that while we embark on a new brand, it is simply a name change.  We are committed to delivering the same great programs and services that you have come to expect from us.

Got blight? Learn how to fight it in your Phoenix neighborhood

Phoenix residents can learn what they can do to prevent blight and neighborhood preservation ordinance violations during a free workshop at 6 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 14, at Phoenix City Hall, Assembly Room A, 200 W. Washington St.  For more information, click here.

Midtown Phoenix neighbors hold inaugural meeting, create website

The new Midtown Museum District neighborhood association is now online.  While the new website is still very much under construction now, it will be the group’s main source of information.  If you have questions about the website, e-mail Edward Jensen, director of communications.

The inaugural meeting of the MMDNA was held last week at the Fairfield Inn and Suites, 2520 N. Central Avenue.  Nearly 50 people were in attendance.  There was a range of interesting and informative speakers, who gave a flavor of what’s going on in the neighborhood, and how residents can have an impact in developing the area.  The minutes can be found at the website, by clicking on “Meeting Notes” in the left-hand column.

The next meeting is planned for Wednesday, October 22 at 6.30 p.m. at the Hilton Suites, 10 E. Thomas Rd.  If you have any questions, e-mail Margaret Dietrich or Julia Tourville, co-founders and coordinators.