FM Technical Profile: WZHT

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Station Name:
Hot 105-7
Urban Contemporary
Transmitter Location:
[map] [street view] In far southern Montgomery County near the community of Grady.  About halfway between CR-1 and CR-39, south of Fannin Mill Road.
Power (ERP):
100 kW
Antenna HAAT:
1,830 feet
Other Information:
60 dBu protected contour map, from the FCC.
#1 FOR HIP HOP AND R&B 105.7
More Information:
[Studio] Street View imagery of the iHeartMedia studios in Montgomery.
This station dates back to an original construction permit licensed to Troy Radio, Incorporated, for a 100 kW FM station on 105.7 MHz.  The original transmitter site was to be on Pocosin Road, southeast of Troy by a few miles.  A modification was filed in 1972 that moved it to a slightly taller tower off US-231 near the Pike Liberal Arts School.  That facility signed on early 1973, transmitting with a CCA 20000-DS transmitter feeding a Gates FMC-10 ten bay FM antenna.  The station was stereo Country music as WTUB (for Troy, Union Springs and Brundidge).  In early 1977, the station was sold to Shelley Broadcasting Company, Inc., who flipped it to Top 40 as WRES (for owner Rudolph E. Shelley.)  The Top 40 must not have done well, as by the end of the decade it was doing Album Oriented Rock (AOR) as "FM-106".

In 1982, the calls changed to WIGC (“Welcome Into God's Country”), with a Country music format and heavy CNN News.  Around this time the station was granted a move to the WSFA TV tower near the Taylor community south of Montgomery; when it signed on from here in 1983, it became the station with the highest antenna height above ground level in the country, at 1,830 feet.  With the relatively uncrowded FM dial of the time, the station was heard not just in Montgomery, but also as a local signal for Columbus, Georgia and Dothan.  But it was also regularly audible as far away as Birmingham and Mobile!  The station's call sign changed to WRJM (for then-owner of Shelley Broadcasting, Jack Mizell) in 1984; the format flipped to Soft Adult Contemporary as "Classic 105.7", before later moving towards a more upbeat Adult Contemporary/Oldies mix. The format didn't do well (or do well enough) because Mizell, near bankruptcy, sold the station in 1987 to New South Communications.  They re-positioned the station with a focus on Montgomery as "Magic 105.7" WMGF.  It's thought that the station may have briefly flirted with Rock, targeting the college kids in Troy, before reverting back to the Magic branding.  The calls became WZHT in July 1988.

The station was sold to Capital Communications in 1991, at which point the station's format was Urban Contemporary.  As "Hot 105.7", the station finally found ratings success, not just in their target city of Montgomery, but often showing up in ratings in other adjacent markets.