TV Technical Profile: WKRG
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- 5.1 - CBS
- 5.2 - ION
- 5.3 - Memorable
5.4 - Court TV
55.1 - The CW
Northeast of Spanish Fort. North of the intersections of Coleman
Lane and Jessie Road with US-31 in Baldwin County. Co-located with
several FMs: WMXC, WABD, WHIL and WRKH.
- Power (ERP):
- 961 kW
- Height Above
Average Terrain (HAAT):
- 1,896 feet (CP)
- 41 dBu protected
map, from the FCC. (OSM
- Owned by Nexstar Media Group, Inc.
Image of the notice regarding the discontinuation of the weather
radar on the -.2 subchannel, from 29 October 2015.
Street View imagery of the WKRG TV (and iHeart Radio) studios on
Street View imagery of the iconic WKRG sign on the microwave tower
behind the studios.
Image of the WKRG TV towers in Spanish Fort. The old one is on
the right, in red and white; the newer and taller one is visible on
Sphere] Google 360° imagery of the studio as it look as of
- WKRG was put on
the air September 5, 1955 by WKRG AM 710. WKRG has been a CBS
affiliate since day one and still has the same calls. The station
was originally owned by Mobile Press Register and Kenneth R. Giddens
(hence the calls). The Giddens family kept ownership until 1998. By
that time, it was the only VHF station in the top 60 markets still
locally owned and not part of a large group ownership. The original
broadcast site was in the Cottage Hill area of southwest Mobile.
Later the station moved to 1,000 ft. transmitter in Spanish Fort. In
the late 80's, WKRG went from the 1,000 foot tower to a 2,000 foot
one at the same site. The WKRG AM, FM and TV combo was grandfathered
in the 70's after FCC rules eliminated any such future combinations.
It remained as such until the radio was sold off in the mid-90's.
- The old tower in
Spanish Fort is still in use by WHIL-FM.
- The studios were
once on St. Louis Street in downtown Mobile, but at one point moved
to their current location on Broadcast Drive near Bel Aire Mall.
- In late 2008 WKRG
added Retro Television Network to a digital subchannel.
station elected to keep analog broadcasts on until the new June 12th
station announced in the summer of 2011 the intent to pick up METV
(Memorable Entertainment TV) in late September; it replaced Retro TV
on 5.3 on 26 September 2011. The station announced plans to
drop its long-running weather radar/forecast subchannel on 5.2 in
late October for the ION television network; the change was expected
to occur over the Halloween weekend, but it happened early on 2
November 2015 instead. The station added Laff TV to the -.4
subchannel in October 2017, despite it already being carried on
The station received a permit in July 2017 to relocate from RF
channel 27 to 20 as part of the FCC repacking process.
The station was slated to
pick up the newly-relaunched Court TV in May 2019, replacing Laff on
the —.4 subchannel.
The station was granted a Special Temporary Authority in August 2019
to operate with a lower-than-normal antenna height while work is done
on the tower in relation to the TV repacking process. It moved
to its post-repack RF channel 20 allocation on 6 September 2019.
The station announced
in the summer of 2020 the need to re-scan for over-the-air viewers,
first a date in August, then 22 September 2020. It was pushed
back again, due to Hurricane Sally, to 21 October 2020. On that
date, the station a subchannel from sister station WFNA, while that
channel began broadcasting in ATSC 3.0.