TV Technical Profile: WALA
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- 10.1 - Fox
10.2 - Cozi TV
10.3 - Laff
10.4 - CourtTV Mystery
10.5 - Circle
view] Northeast of Spanish Fort along US-31, near the
intersection of Jenkins Pit Road. Co-located with WFNA-DT.
- Power (ERP):
- 29 kW
- Height Above
Average Terrain (HAAT):
- 1,250 feet
- 36 dBu protected
map, from the FCC.
- Owned by Meredith
Alvin Williams of the News and Information About Television and
Radio in Southwest Alabama site writes this multi-article history on
short promotional video tour of the station from March 2002.
Owned by the Meredith Corporation
- This is Mobile's
second television station (the first being WKAB TV 48, which lasted
only a year). It was put on the air by WALA AM 1410 in January 14,
1953. The station originally broadcast from a 300 ft. tower behind
the WALA-AM/TV studios at 210 Government Street. That tower was
felled in a storm in the 50's and the station moved to a 500 ft.
tower in Spanish Fort. A few years pass and the station again moves,
this time to its present location near Loxley for better Pensacola
coverage. WALA was an NBC affiliate until 1997 when it was acquired
by a Fox subsidiary. Has been through many owners in its 46 year
history, with the more minutae details available on the station's
Wikipedia page. The studios at 210 Government were used until 2002,
when the station moved to a new site near Hank Aaron Stadium in the
western part of town.
became Alabama's first digital television broadcaster, on DTV
second tower WALA broadcast from, in Spanish Fort, was donated to
Alabama Public Television for WEIQ and is still in use by them
- The book,
"Alabama's First Broadcast Stations",
by Harry Butler says the WALA calls stood for "We Are Loyal
carried area CW affiliate WBPG on a digital subchannel until March
2007, when that station signed on its own low power digital
signal. The station (now WFNA) has its own full power setup.
station elected to keep analog broadcasts on until the new June 12th
- In March
2012 it was revealed that the station was working on upgrades to
allow them to broadcast local newscasts in HD. The high
definition newscasts debuted about one month later.
- The station had
been owned by LIN TV since 2006. As part of a merger between
LIN TV and Media General in the summer of 2014, the combined company
was required to spin off certain stations in certain markets.
In Mobile, the choice was between WKRG (Media General) and WALA
(LIN). The combined company decided to sell off WALA to
Meredith Corporation, and the transfer was approved by the FCC in
December 2014. Around the start of June 2015 the station added
a subchannel with the heading "Cozi TV" on 10.2. The channel
launched on the 9th of June. In September 2015 it was
announced that Media General was acquiring Meredith
Corporation. Once again, this will require divestiture of
either WKRG, WFNA or WALA. It's unknown at this time which
station will be divested, although shortly after the announcement it
was speculated that Media General would cancel the merger in order
to be bought by another company.
- The station added a third
channel to its lineup in mid-February 2016, with the addition of the
comedy-centric Laff network. A fourth channel debuted in late
May 2017, with the addition of Escape. A fifth channel, Circle,
debuted in January 2020.
In late March 2020 the station added a sixth subchannel airing
school-related programming from the Mobile County Public School
System, which lasted only a short time, until Mobile schools went back
to in-person teaching. Escape became CourtTV Mystery in 2020.
After months of rumors, Meredith Corporation announced they were
exiting the television broadcasting business in May 2021. WALA
and other sister stations are being sold to Gray Television, who
already own stations in Huntsville, Dothan, Birmingham and
Montgomery. After the sale closes, Gray will become the second
biggest television station owner in America after Sinclair.