NY Tragedy Affects Radio Stations


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New York City - Sep 11 and 12, 2001 - The World Trade Center housed an extensive array of broadcast signals. Four FM stations and nine TV stations had antennas located on one of the 110-story buildings. WPAT-FM (93.1, Spanish Broadcasting System) and WKTU-FM (103.5, Clear Channel) are the two commercial stations that had facilities there. Both stations are reported to have alternate transmission facilities available to them elsewhere in the metro.

Two noncommercial stations, WNYC-FM (93.9, WNYC Broadcasting Foundation) and WRKC-FM (89.9, Columbia University) also had their main towers there, but it appears that these stations do not have alternate transmission facilities available and both are believed to be off the air.

The Empire State Building is the preferred site for most of the FM signals in New York City.

The TV stations with transmitters on the World Trade Center include WCBS (2), WNBC (4), WNYW (5), WABC (7), WWOR (9), WPIX (11), WNET (13), WPXN (31) and WNJU (47).

When the tragedy occurred, three of the FM stations made arrangements to receive new transmitters and antennas. WNYC, WPAT and WKCR ordered Harris Quest transmitters and ERI two-bay, half-wave spaced antennas. Cablewave has also supplied coaxial cable. Modulation Sciences is sending a pair of Sidekick subcarrier generators to WKCR so that stations can resume its Chinese-language program and a reading service for the blind.

WKTU has backup facilities located at 4 Times Square.

The transmitters for WNYC and WKCR left Quincy, IL, the evening of September 11. The transmitter for WPAT departed Quincy on the morning of September 12. Both truck deliveries stopped in Chandler, IN, to pick up the ERI antennas before continuing on to New York City.

The deliveries for WNYC and WPAT will meet FEMA officials in New Jersey before being escorted into the city. Possible locations for the temporary facilities include the Empire State Building, which has a port available on the master antenna system, the WQXR tower or the muicipal building on Cetner Street. WKCR will install its replacement transmitter on the roof of its new studio building, using a coaxial cable originally installed for a microwave dish.

Harris is also supplying transmitters to six of the TV stations. New transmitters for WABC, WNBC, WNYW and WWOR were shipped on September 11. A transmitter for WPIX was shipped on September 12. A transmitter for WCBS is in the process of being built.




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