Charlie Francis of C.B. Richard Ellis told Buddy Cianci a short time ago that Belo Corporation, the Dallas-based parent of the ProJo, has retained his firm to sell the newspaper's Providence real estate, including the signature downtown building.
Francis says the dowtown property, including parking lots and a parking garage, includes four properties. It will be offered as a package, although all offers will be considered, he says, adding, "There is no asking price."
[Update: my friend Tim White reports that the combined assessed value for all four properties -- a figure confirmed by Francis -- is $33.2 million]
Belo announced earlier this year, as part of company-wide cuts, that it would consider selling the Journal Building.
This marks a remarkable change for the Journal, which had once invested in the Providence Biltmore to keep the landmark hotel from closing a few decades ago.
"These things do not happen overnight," Francis says of a possible sale, adding that he nonetheless expects "a successful conclusion."