Site will host WUSF reporters, production studios, fundraising staff and the Community News Collaborative
Sarasota, FL (August 15, 2023) — Expanding news coverage and investment in the wider Sarasota community, WUSF Public Media is celebrating the opening of a newsroom and studios in the burgeoning Limelight District of Sarasota.
The site will host a growing team of WUSF journalists covering the region, as well as WUSF development staff and producers, along with the new Community News Collaborative (CNC) that is funded by the Barancik Foundation.
“With too many communities across the country losing newsrooms, we are expanding into the fast-growing and vital southern region of our broadcasting area,” said WUSF General Manager JoAnn Urofsky. “Our team and our partners will be able to form deeper relationships and better delve into vital issues that affect residents of our state.”
WUSF is the National Public Radio partner station covering west central Florida, broadcasting NPR programs such as Morning Edition and All Things Considered, and WUSF is the local producer of projects such as Florida Matters, Arts Axis Florida and Health News Florida.
WUSF already has a 24-hour classical music broadcasting site in south Sarasota county that broadcasts on 89.1 and broadcast studios at USF Sarasota-Manatee. With this new expansion in the Limelight District, WUSF will host journalists and development staff.
The Limelight District was a natural choice for location, Urofsky said, as the area is fast becoming a vibrant neighborhood of artists, architects, communications companies and entrepreneurs in general. The energy of the area provides the perfect home base for journalists, she said.
The developer of the property, Howard Davis, came to Sarasota after a 30-plus-year career in Boston where he reinvigorated several neighborhoods with new buildings and new streetscapes.
In Sarasota, Davis was an important player in the development of the Rosemary District, and over the last several years he shifted his focus to renovating properties in the new Limelight District. This required special attention to find interesting properties to renovate and the right mix of creative tenants. Adding the WUSF newsroom was a tremendous opportunity, he said, as the wider region needs more journalists working to cover important events and trends.
“With the focus of this neighborhood on the arts and creativity, we have a growing group of people who are interesting and inquisitive, and we have more people like that coming,” Davis said. “Reporters are a natural fit because they do not want to be on the 9th floor of an anonymous office building. They want to be down in the thick of things where the actions is.”
The CNC partner project of WUSF will have five journalists covering the region and providing news articles, video and audio dispatches to partner publications that subscribe to the service. Among them are The Sarasota Herald-Tribune, the Observer Media Group, Venice Gondolier/The Daily Sun, The Bradenton Herald, Tempo News, ABC 7 WWSB, WEDU Public Media, WSLR, Solmart Media, iHeart Radio, Sarasota Magazine, Sarasota Scene Magazine and West Coast Woman.
About WUSF Public Media
WUSF Public Media is a comprehensive media organization that provides media services to the community and businesses through public broadcasting and multi-media production services. Licensed to the University of South Florida, WUSF Public Media has been serving the public interest through programming, educational outreach and community partnerships for 50 years. For more information, visit www.wusf.org.