In a show of solidarity after the WTC collapse, 11 television stations
serving New York City and the surrounding area have formed the New York/New
Jersey Broadcasters' Coalition to locate and develop a permanent transmission
site for over-the-air analog and digital service.
Since Sept. 11, the stations have set up temporary broadcasting facilities at either the Empire State building in New York or the Armstrong tower in Alpine N.J., although not all are happy with their assigned power levels and signal propagation.
Bill Baker, president and CEO of coalition member
station WNET(TV), said that the coalition will look at the feasibility of
replicating analog servcie provided before Sept. 11 by building and managing a
shared transmission tower at a separate location.
New York's Governors Island, presently owned by the federal government, and Fresh Kills land fill on Staten Island, are options being considered along with other unspecified locales.
The members of the coalition are: WABC-TV; WCBS-TV, WHSE-TV; WNBC(TV): WNET(TV); WNJU(TV); WNYW (TV); WPIX(TV); WPXN-TV; WWOR-TV; and WXTV(TV).
'The damage to our over-the-air broadcasting capabilities represents the potential loss of billions of dollars in revenue to New York and the tri-state region, and could change the face of American broadcasting forever,' Baker said, in a prepared statement. 'The loss is not simply to the broadcasters, but to every individual and business that relies on television service as a means of giving and getting information, and of generating income.'
The proposed shared tower site would accommodate digital
stations WABC-DT, WNBC-DT, WNET-DT, WPIX-DT, and WWOR-DT, that were also knocked
off the North tower of the WTC.
The coalition estimates that three million people watch TV with a rooftop antenna or indoor rabbit ears.
- Michael Grotticelli