CTV Two Alberta

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"Access TV" redirects here. For the American infomercial channel, see Access Television Network.
CTV Two Alberta
CTV Two Alberta logo
Launched June 30, 1973
Network CTV Two
Former affiliations: Independent (1973–2011) (see below)
Owned by Bell Media
(Learning and Skills Television of Alberta Limited)[1]
Picture format 480i (SDTV)
1080i (HDTV)
Country Canada
Broadcast area Alberta
Headquarters Edmonton, Alberta
Formerly called Access (1979–2011)
Sister channel(s) CFRN-DT, CFCN-DT
Website CTV Two Alberta
Availability
Satellite
Bell TV Channel 267
Shaw Direct Channel 351/23
Cable
Shaw Exo TV Channel 13/212 (SD/HD - Calgary)
Channel 9/212 (SD/HD - Edmonton)
Available on most Albertan cable systems Check local listings, channels may vary
IPTV
Telus Optik TV Channel 13 (Calgary)
Channel 9 (Edmonton)
CJAL-TV / CIAN-TV
CJAL: Edmonton, Alberta
CIAN: Calgary, Alberta
Branding Access
Channels Analog:
CJAL: 9 (VHF)
CIAN: 13 (VHF)
First air date CIAN: January 9, 1984
CJAL: December 1, 1986
Last air date CIAN/CJAL: August 31, 2011 (transmitters terminated)
Call letters' meaning CJAL: ALberta
CIAN: Access Network
Sister station(s) CFRN-TV, CFCN-TV
Former affiliations CIAN: Independent (1984–2011)
CJAL: Independent (1986–2011)
Transmitter power CJAL: 15 kW
CIAN: 9.9 kW
Height CJAL: 168.1 m
CIAN: 246.3 m
Transmitter coordinates CJAL:
53°24′19″N 113°20′42″W / 53.40528°N 113.34500°W / 53.40528; -113.34500 (CJAL-TV)
CIAN:
51°3′53″N 114°12′51″W / 51.06472°N 114.21417°W / 51.06472; -114.21417 (CIAN-TV)Coordinates: 53°32′30.5″N 113°38′29″W / 53.541806°N 113.64139°W / 53.541806; -113.64139 (ACCESS)

CTV Two Alberta is a Canadian English language entertainment, information and educational television channel in the province of Alberta. It is owned by Bell Media, and operates as a de facto owned-and-operated station of its secondary CTV Two television system.

The channel is licensed by the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) as an educational programming service for Alberta, and was formerly a public broadcaster owned by the Albertan provincial government. Since becoming a private broadcaster, it has aired a mix of educational programming, along with entertainment programming more favourable to advertisers and viewers.

The channel is also designated as a "satellite-to-cable undertaking"[2] serving the entirety of Alberta, and is therefore carried throughout the province on cable and licensed IPTV services on each service's basic tier. It is also available on both national satellite services, Bell TV and Shaw Direct. In addition, the station formerly operated two terrestrial transmitters, CJAL-TV (channel 9) in Edmonton, where the channel's main studios are located, and CIAN-TV (channel 13) in Calgary.

History[edit]

Access's logo from the 1970s
Access's previous logo from 2008 to 2011, designed to resemble the logo used by the "A" system. Access also aired limited programming from "A" during this period.

The channel was launched on June 30, 1973 as Access by the Alberta government, through the Alberta Educational Communications Corporation (AECC), alongside CKUA Radio. Prior to this point, English-language educational programs aired on Radio-Canada's television station CBXFT in Edmonton. At its launch, Access was only available through cable, and did not broadcast over-the-air.

On January 9, 1984, AECC was granted a licence from the CRTC for a television station in Calgary, CIAN; on December 1, 1986, AECC was granted another licence for a television station in Edmonton, CJAL, to rebroadcast the programs from CIAN. Both stations rebroadcast the Access feed.

After re-evaluating all provincial funding recipients, the Government of Alberta announced in 1993 that it would cease to directly fund Access past 1994. As a result, in 1995, Access was privatized and sold to Learning and Skills Television of Alberta Limited (LSTA), which is 60% owned by CHUM Limited.[3] In February 2005, CHUM Limited acquired the remaining 40% interest in LSTA (and renamed it Access Media Group), giving the company 100% of its shares, including its ownership in Access.

On July 12, 2006, CTVglobemedia announced that it would make a friendly takeover bid to buy CHUM Limited.[4] Due to CTVglobemedia's plans to keep CTV and Citytv, Rogers Communications was expected to purchase Access (along with CHUM's A-Channel stations, CKX-TV in Brandon, Canadian Learning Television and SexTV: The Channel) as announced on April 9, 2007, pending CRTC approval (and approval of CTVglobemedia's purchase).

With the CRTC electing to force CTV to sell the Citytv stations instead, the Rogers deal was rendered void. As such, CTVglobemedia retained Access along with the A-Channel stations, CKX-TV and all of CHUM's specialty channels, and sold the Citytv stations to Rogers. The takeover transaction was finalized on June 22, 2007. The A-Channel stations were rebranded as "A" on August 11, 2008; on the same date, Access debuted a new A-styled logo and began airing programming from "A" during certain primetime hours.[5]

On June 8, 2011, it was revealed that Access would be relaunched as CTV Two Alberta on August 29, 2011, as part of a rebranding of the "A" system.[6]

In most of its service area, CTV Two Alberta competes with KSPS-TV, the PBS member in Spokane, Washington. KSPS has been available on cable in Calgary and Edmonton for the better part of three decades.

Digital television[edit]

As part of Canada's transition to digital terrestrial television, broadcast television stations in Calgary and Edmonton were required to convert to digital broadcasting or sign off completely by August 31, 2011. Prior to this deadline, the station had in place an analog over-the-air television transmitter in each of those two markets. The station did not have any other over-the-air transmitters.

As the channel is licensed as a satellite-to-cable undertaking, it is not required to offer over-the-air transmitters. Due to this, the costs of converting the two Access transmitters in Calgary and Edmonton to digital, and because the network already must be carried by cable and IPTV providers in the area as the province's designated educational broadcaster, CTV Two shut down its over-the-air television transmitters on August 31, 2011.[7]

Programming[edit]

CTV Two Alberta airs a variety of educational and informative programs along with entertainment programs all of which include children's programs, documentaries, feature films, talk shows, dramas, comedies and other programs. Since August 2008, CTV Two Alberta (known then as Access) has aired programming from Bell's secondary television system A (and additionally modified its branding to more closely resemble A's), while maintaining its educational mandate.

Specifically regarding its edcational programming, the channel produces, promotes, and delivers television-based multimedia learning opportunities to learners of all ages, in partnership with Alberta Learning, educational institutions, and educators. Many of the programs, including all of the dramas, are connected to and promote formal courses of study offered by the province's universities and colleges or the formal learning objectives of Alberta Learning.

The above programming includes primetime series from CTV Two, as well as syndicated shows, much of which must be related to some sort of educational aim. For example, in fall 2008, Access broadcast Mad Men and Pushing Daisies, tied to an English course at Mount Royal University titled "Reading the Popular",[8] as well as Fringe as part of Lethbridge Community College's "Basic Television Production" course.[9]

Starting March 9, 2009, Access began airing a province-wide news and current affairs magazine program called Alberta Primetime, from the CTV/Access studios in Edmonton. Resources from CTV's owned-and-operated stations in Edmonton (CFRN-TV) and Calgary (CFCN-TV) will be used to produce the program.[10]

See also[edit]

  • CTV Two Atlantic - a similar cable-only affiliate of CTV Two in Atlantic Canada; formerly the Atlantic Satellite Network (ASN) and A Atlantic
  • City Saskatchewan - a similar cable-only affiliate of City in the Canadian province of Saskatchewan; formerly Saskatchewan Communications Network
  • The CW Plus - an alternate feed of The CW Television Network for small and mid-size television markets in the United States, made up of privately owned digital multicast channels and cable-only affiliates, with syndicated programs supplied by the network in addition to CW network programming

References[edit]

External links[edit]