It’s been an unkind week for Hubbard Radio. In Chicago, some 11 layoffs attracted the attention of nearly every industry trade publication. Then came the dismissal of Rick Balis at Rocker KSHE-FM in St. Louis after many years on the job. Meanwhile, at least one broker wonders if Lew Dickey Jr. and his Modern Media Acquisition Corp. is looking at all or some of Hubbard’s radio assets.
Amid all of that negative talk comes word that Hubbard is looking to give its Cincinnati radio stations a splashy new home.
According to the Gannett-owned Cincinnati Enquirer, Hubbard is planning to build a new facility for its radio stations in the Oakley neighborhood, on the northeast side of the city.
Citing city planning documents, the newspaper notes that Hubbard has offered to buy three vacant parcels owned by the City of Cincinnati near the corner of Madison Road and Kennedy Avenue, where it would build a new 30,000-square-foot office building and broadcast facility.
Hubbard’s Cincinnati stations are comprised of Hot AC WKRQ “Q102,” AC WREW “Mix 94.9,” and Country siblings WUBE-FM and WYGY-FM “97.3 The Wolf.”
The City Planning Commission intends to vote on the proposed sale, which the Enquirer says was valued at about $522,000 in 2017, at its Dec. 7 meeting.
The new facility would replace Hubbard’s Walnut Hills site and allow for the hiring of 37 additional workers. It presently has 142 staffers in Cincinnati.
The Enquirer also notes that Hubbard’s presence in Oakley would bring about $14.2 million in annual payroll to the neighborhood.