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‘Ebony’ and ‘Jet’ Relocate to New Office; Former Tenants, Cliff Dwellers Club, Evicted

Johnson Publishing Company will move out of the Ebony/Jet Building by the end of the third quarter, according to company officials.

The company’s new home will be inside the Cliff Dwellers Club, located at 200 S. Michigan, just a few blocks north of its current 820 S. Michigan address.

Cliff Dwellers Club was founded in 1907 as a haven for musicians, architects, authors and other creatives.

The Club members were handed a 120-day eviction notice, charging that the building’s management company (it is owned by BPG Properties Ltd.), invoked a contract clause that allows it to kick one tenant out in favor of a new tenant who will occupy more space in the building.

The three top floors of the building were unoccupied; Johnson Publishing Company will rent the club’s 5,300-square-foot space on the 22nd-floor, and the 20th and 21st floors below it.

Although the new home is smaller than the storied 820 S. Michigan Ebony/Jet Building, the amenities are comparable, as some JPC employees will enjoy offices with a view of Millennium Park, and according to COO Desiree Rogers, the kitchen facilities will be used to entertain celebrities.

The long-term lease is to include naming rights, however, it is yet to be decided if the naming rights will be used.

Johnson Publishing Company sold its old home to Columbia College Chicago for $8 million.

Full disclosure: Zondra Hughes worked at “Ebony” from 1999-2006, and penned a memoir, “Living the Ebony Life: E-Mails from the Plantation,” that included a history of her growing pains at the company.