KRMA-TV Denver was given the official go-ahead by Jefferson County to begin construction on Mt. Morrison of a tower that will be home to the public TV station's analog and digital transmissions as well as to two public FM radio stations and three TV-station tenants.
"We're already moving on to design, funding and construction," says KRMA-TV President/General Manager James Morgese. He led the effort on behalf of the station and KUVO-FM and KVOD-FM, two Denver public radio stations that will be equity partners with KRMA in the $1 million tower.
Reflecting on lessons learned in getting the tower approved, Morgese says it's important for broadcasters to listen to any opposition and pay attention to concerns. "If you don't, you'll run into problems."
Up next for Morgese is dealing with Quiet Zone issues and working on getting a PTFP grant from Congress to provide partial funding. The first window for requesting that grant opens next month.
After a PTFP grant is approved, it's onto grants from local corporations. Morgese hopes to have funding complete by October so orders can be placed for equipment and construction. His goal is completion by January, but, he adds, that's a very aggressive timetable.
The Quiet Zone issue has to be settled by the Department of Commerce and the FCC. The new tower is four miles farther than the old one from where the government conducts confidential tests. Within the Quiet Zone, RF emissions are limited.
"We just need to get someone to move on the decision so we can get moving," Morgese says.