Editor’s note: The agreement to sell The Georgetown Times building on Front street has spawned many questions in recent weeks. In an effort to quell any rumors that the multimedia company is closing, we thought it was necessary to put the record straight with this report.
As reported in March, an agreement is in place to sell the office of the Georgetown Times and South Strand News to make way for a proposed hotel along Georgetown's downtown waterfront.
But the newspapers aren’t going away. The company, Georgetown Communications, will remain in Georgetown, though at a new, yet-to-be determined nearby location. Representatives of Evening Post Industries, parent company of Georgetown Communications, are looking for the proper facilities to continue producing The Georgetown Times, the state's oldest newspaper, and the South Strand News. The Georgetown Times is 221 years old – that’s more than two centuries of bringing community news and information of local events to the people.
P.J. Browning, president of EPI's newspaper division, said the company wants Georgetown Communications to stay in the heart of the city, while still supporting growth with the hotel development.
"We will look for a prominent location for the Georgetown Times and would like to remain in the downtown area," she said. "Some people may remember that our location prior to this one was just across the street. We are committed to Georgetown and look for our newspaper to continue serving the community for years to come," Browning said. "The hotel provides an excellent opportunity to add to the economy of Georgetown and we feel the location of the Georgetown Times building will provide an exceptional space for this venue."
The agreement to sell the building at 615 Front St., Georgetown, came more than a year after the project was made known to the public. Developers plan to build a boutique hotel at the corner of Front and Queen streets. The sale is expected to be finalized in the coming months following a due diligence process.
Georgetown Communications has been in its current building for 32 years. In 2011, the company moved its printing process to Charleston. The thousands of square feet needed in the building for the press and printing process became unnecessary.
The sale does not include Harborwalk Marina or the property currently occupied by the Georgetown County Chamber of Commerce -- both are owned by EPI.