On August 1, the fourth phase of the broadcast TV post-spectrum auction repack process began in New York, at One World Trade Center.
As the industry embarks on this next step, Durst Broadcasting has taken a front seat on an initiative designed to balance the future needs of broadcast TV with that of wireless services companies.
“We have been working with the broadcasters and equipment suppliers for well over a year to make this transition a smooth one,” said John Lyons, Assistant Vice President and Director of Broadcast Communications for The Durst Organization. “Thanks to the efforts of the New York City broadcast community, equipment supplier RFS and systems integrator DSI RF Systems, we were ready for this operation on August 1 as scheduled. Within a few minutes, the stations were on their new channels.”
Because One World Trade Center is the primary facility for most of the over-the-air broadcasters in New York City metro market, Durst Broadcasting has been planning and coordinating this transfer with WCBS, WLIW, WNBC, WNJU, WNYW, WWOR, WRNN and WPXN, the FCC and Durst’s partners for several years.
To prepare for the transfer, Durst Broadcasting instituted the following protocols over the last year:
- The installation of a redundant combiner and antenna systems that allowed all of the stations to continue operations while we updated the existing hardware with the new hardware.
- Monthly calls and meetings with the TV broadcasters began over a year ago in preparation and increased to weekly calls in advance of the August 1 repack. All the broadcasters were provided with ample time to independently test and coordinate with other co-located stations and adjacent market stations to ensure the technical viability of the FCC repack.
- Instructing viewers who watch free over-the-air television with an antenna to rescan their TV set to continue receiving local channels.
The Durst Organization, founded in 1915 by Joseph Durst, is the owner, manager and builder of 13 million square feet of premiere Manhattan office towers and over 2,000 residential rental units with over 3,000 in development.