Automobile Magazine moving to offices with room for video production in Pittsfield Township
Leisa Thompson | Ann Arbor News
“Our readers, even the ones who had never been to Michigan, knew that our magazine was at 120 E. Liberty, and we had been there basically since the magazine was founded,” he said.
“It was a huge part of our identity and our history and we had a great relationship with Ed Shaffran, who was a great landlord the last twenty-something years.”
DeMatio said that the move was predicated on a need for more space for the magazine, specifically for the growing video department.
“We had simply outgrown our footprint at our old office,” he said.
“We’re not just a print magazine anymore, we have a website, we do an iPad version. We will be doing more and more video. This new space will have room for a new video and photo studio.”
The new office location is 15,000 square feet with an option to expand. It is owned by Lewis Klein Properties and was listed by Neal Warling of Jones Lang LaSalle.
Tom Ramage, director of corporate real estate for Automobile’s parent company Source Interlink Media, negotiated the deal for the new office at 1995 Highland Dr.
“We’re very excited for Automobile. This is a great property,” Ramage said. “We think that this will be very beneficial for the company as we continue to grow.”
Another primary reason for moving was the opportunity for the magazine to have its own parking lot.
“We were using the parking structures downtown and it was a major logistical hassle with our ever-rotating fleet of test cars,” DeMatio said. “We have different cars coming and going all the time, so it’s really a benefit to be moving to a facility where we control our own parking.”
About 20 employees will be moving to the new location, and DeMatio said that it is likely more will be hired in the near future to work in the expanded video and photo departments. The company is in the process of moving, and will be operating out of the new office by the end of the week.
While the space will be the primary office for Automobile, other Source Interlink titles such as Motor Trend might use the video and photography studios in the new location for some of their title's productions.
Shaffran said he has multiple prospective new tenants for the space being vacated by the magazine, but has yet to sign a lease with anyone.
“We have some people looking to take the space as is, or we might do something different and split it up into a few spaces. It’s very unique,” he said.
The office sits above restaurant space that had been Champion House. A new Japanese Steakhouse is expected to open there sometime in the fall.