Capital New York Relaunching, Bringing Politico Flare to Big Apple

The site will have a “Playbook”-style newsletter overseen by Mike Allen

Last Updated: July 10, 2014 @ 8:07 PM

Politico will relaunch Capital New York on December 3, promising a deeper roster of journalists and a flashier website.

It’s part of the political news organization’s attempts to extend its influence beyond the Beltway and into the Big Apple, where it has promised to cover media barons and Albany power players with the same aggressive approach it has applied to legislators and D.C. insiders.

In September, Politico publisher Robert Allbritton purchased the New York City-centric website.

“We’re going to do in New York what we’ve done in Washington,” Capital New York CEO Jim VandeHei, who was also recently named CEO of Politico, told TheWrap in an interview last month. “We’ll be looking at Albany and City Hall and also the business of media in a unique way. We’re going to be focused on issues like state and city politics and we’re going to do the same thing that we’ve done in Washington, which is going in with overwhelming force in terms of the number of reporters we have covering our core beats.”

Also read: Politico CEO Jim VandeHei Talks Capital New York Relaunch, Jeff Bezos’ WaPo Purchase

Capital has bulked up its team, hiring the likes of Alex Weprin from TV Newser and New York Daily News veteran JoAnne Wasserman, but it does face fierce competition in a crowded market. Even as legacy publications like the New York Post and the New York Times struggle to find a financially viable way to cover the daily news grind, leaner, but well-financed digital players like DNAInfo and Capital itself have begun to establish names for themselves. 

Capital will maintain a free site, but the majority of its coverage will be exclusive to “Pro” subscribers.  There will be three Pro subscription services available around Capital’s coverage areas –City Hall Pro, Albany Pro and Media Pro. Paid subscriptions will begin next year, and until that point the content will be free.

This Thursday, Capital will debut “Capital Playbook,” a free early-morning newsletter modeled after Politico’s popular Playbook newsletter and the site has tapped Mike Allen, the indefatigable, early a.m. news hound to help launch the publication, along with Capital reporters Azi Paybarah and Jimmy Vielkind.