The Star Tribune next month will begin printing the Midwest regional edition of USA Today under a commercial arrangement with the national newspaper's parent company, Gannett Co.

The move is the result of Gannett's decision to close its Gannett Offset printing facility in Maple Grove, where local copies of USA Today currently are printed.

The Gannett-owned St. Cloud Times, which also is printed there, will take its press operations to ECM Printing in Princeton, Minn., said Publisher Melinda ­Vonderahe.

Beginning in late July, the Star Tribune will start printing 27,000 daily copies of USA Today Monday through Friday. USA Today does not publish on weekends.

Regional distribution of USA Today is already handled by the Star Tribune, as is delivery for the New York Times, Wall Street Journal and some issues of the St. Paul Pioneer Press.

"The Star Tribune is pleased that another high-caliber publication will be able to take full advantage of our world-class production facilities to bring more news and information to Minnesota readers," said Steve Yaeger, vice president of marketing and public relations.

Financial terms of the deal were not released.

In recent years, the Star Tribune's Heritage printing plant in the North Loop has become a revenue generator, as opposed to a pure newspaper expense.

USA Today is the Star Tribune's second large printing job contract involving another newspaper. In early 2014, the Star Tribune started printing the Pioneer Press after its owner, Digital First Media, decided to shutter its St. Paul printing operation in a cost-savings move.

Several once-rival newspapers across the country have entered into shared printing press operations including publications in Dallas and Fort Worth; Portland, Ore.; Chicago, and Los Angeles.

Gannett's facility in Maple Grove has been gradually reducing its workforce for several months, said Al Madsen, Maple Grove city administrator. At its peak, Gannett Offset had about 300 employees, he said.

David Phelps • 612-673-7269