|City of license||Edmonton, Alberta|
|Channels||Digital: 17 (UHF)
Virtual: 51.1 (PSIP)
|Translators||4 CKEM-TV-1 Red Deer|
(Rogers Media, Inc.)
|First air date||September 18, 1997|
|Call letters' meaning||EdMonton|
|Sister station(s)||CJEO-DT, CHBN-FM|
|Former callsigns||CKEM-TV (1997–2011)|
|Former channel number(s)||Analog:
51 (UHF, 1997–2011)
|Former affiliations||A-Channel (1997–2005)|
|Transmitter power||CKEM-DT: 107 kW
CKEM-TV-1: 7 kW
|Height||CKEM-DT: 294 m
CKEM-TV-1: 229.7 m
CKEM-DT, virtual channel 51 (UHF digital channel 17), is a City owned-and-operated television station located in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. The station is owned by the Rogers Media division of Rogers Communications, as part of a twinstick with Omni Television outlet CJEO-DT (channel 56). The two stations share studios located at Enterprise Square on Jasper Avenue Northwest in Downtown Edmonton, CKEM's transmitter is located near Yellowhead Highway/Highway 16A; CKEM also operates a rebroadcast transmitter in Red Deer on VHF channel 4.
This station can also be seen on Shaw Cable channel 7 and in high definition on digital channel 213. On Shaw Direct, the channel is available on 347 (Classic) or 022 (Advanced), and in high definition on channel 014 (Classic) or 514 (Advanced). This station is also available on Bell TV channel 241.
The station was established by Craig Media Inc., and went on the air for the first time on September 18, 1997 as the flagship station of the A-Channel television system. It promoted itself as a very locally-oriented station whose schedule was not drawn up in Toronto, with the slogan "Very independent, Very Edmonton!"
In 1999, a letter bomb exploded in the CKEM newsroom, injuring the assignment editor and one of the general assignment reporters. The station simulcasted the Live@Five and News@Six newscasts from Calgary sister station CKAL-TV, while police investigated the bombing. Local Edmonton newscasts resumed later on in the evening. Raymond Neal Best was charged with attempted murder and possession of explosive substances, in connection with the A-Channel letter bomb, and the attempted letter bombings aimed at both Calgary and Edmonton police chiefs.
On September 17, 2003, several employees who were members of the Canadian Energy and Paperworkers Local 1900 went on strike over worry of jobs being lost, wages, and jobs being moved to Calgary (including master control operations). The strike lasted 166 days. CKEM's master control facilities moved to the CKAL studios in Calgary in late 2003.
In 2004, Craig Media announced a deal to sell the A-Channel stations to CHUM Limited. The sale was approved by the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission on November 19, 2004, and became official on December 1. On February 3, 2005, CHUM announced that the A-Channel stations would be relaunched under the Citytv brand (which originated at CITY-TV in Toronto) by that fall, effectively turning Citytv into a television system; the changes took effect on August 2 of that year.
CTVglobemedia takes over CHUM Limited
On July 12, 2006, Bell Globemedia (later known as CTVglobemedia, and now Bell Media) announced plans to take over CHUM Limited. On June 8, 2007, the CRTC announced its approval of CTVglobemedia's purchase of CHUM Limited, but added a condition that CTVglobemedia must sell off CHUM's Citytv stations (including CKEM) to another buyer while keeping the A-Channel stations since the company already owned CTV owned-and-operated station CFRN-TV (channel 3) in the same market. The following Monday, it was announced that Rogers Communications would buy the Citytv system's stations. The sale was approved by the CRTC on September 28, 2007, and was finalized on one month later on October 31.
CKEM presently broadcasts 17.5 hours of locally produced newscasts each week, all consisting of 3½ hours each weekday of a local version of City's local morning news program franchise Breakfast Television.
On July 12, 2006, the station's local newscasts (with the exception of CityNews at Noon) were immediately cancelled after years of ratings struggle in the Edmonton market. The local newscasts were replaced by a half-hour newsmagazine program called Your City at 6 and 11 p.m., along with a national and international newscast called CityNews International (produced at Citytv's CityNews studios in Toronto, Ontario). On January 19, 2010, CityNews at Noon, Your City and CityNews International were cancelled as part of Citytv's corporate restructuring and concurrent layoffs.
Notable former on–air staff
|Channel||Video||Aspect||PSIP Short Name||Programming|
|51.1||1080i||16:9||CKEM-DT||Main CKEM-DT programming / City|
On May 26, 2010, CKEM began testing its digital signal with the broadcast of a test loop. On June 29 of that year, the station began broadcasting regular programming over its digital signal. On August 31, 2011, when Canadian television stations in CRTC-designated mandatory markets transitioned from analogue to digital broadcasts, the station's digital signal relocated from UHF channel 51 to channel 17. Through the use of PSIP, digital television receivers originally displayed CKEM-DT's virtual channel as 51.1.
- "CRTC tells CTVglobemedia to sell 5 Citytv stations". cbc.ca via Yahoo! Canada News. 2007-06-08. Retrieved 2007-06-08.[dead link]
- Citytv Restructures Television Operations To Improve Business and Better Serve Audiences Rogers Media press release via CNW Group, published January 19, 2010.
- RabbitEars TV Query for CBWFT
- Digital Television - Office of Consumer Affairs (OCA)
- Official website
- Canadian Communications Foundation - CKEM-TV History
- Query the REC's Canadian station database for CKEM-TV
- Query TV Fool's coverage map for CKEM