WFXQ-CD

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WFXQ-CD
(repeater of WWLP)
Wwlp 2009 tv.png
Springfield/Holyoke, Massachusetts
Branding 22 News
Slogan Working For You
Channels Digital: 28 (UHF)
Affiliations NBC
Owner Media General
(WWLP Broadcasting, LLC)
First air date May 6, 1987
Call letters' meaning refers to unfulfilled
Fox affiliation
Sister station(s) WWLP, WCTX, WTNH, WPRI-TV, WNAC-TV
Former callsigns W11BJ (1988-2006)
W28CT (2006)
WXCW-CA (2006)
WFXQ-CA (2006-2009)
Former channel number(s) 11 (VHF analog, 1987-2006)
28 (UHF analog, 2006-2009)
Former affiliations Independent (1987-2004)
UPN (2004-2006, as repeater of WCTX)
TheCoolTV (WWLP-DT2 simulcast, 2010-2013)
Transmitter power 0.024 kW
Height 260 m
Class Class A digital
Facility ID 2650
Transmitter coordinates 42°15′5.0″N 72°38′43.0″W / 42.251389°N 72.645278°W / 42.251389; -72.645278

WFXQ-CD is a Class A television station for the Pioneer Valley of Western Massachusetts that is licensed to Springfield. It broadcasts a digital signal on UHF channel 28 from a transmitter at the top of the old Mount Tom Ski Area in Holyoke. Owned by the LIN Media, WFXQ is sister to NBC affiliate WWLP who it serves as a full-time repeater of, and the two share studios at Broadcast Center in the Sandy Hill section of Chicopee next to the I-391/MA 116 interchange.

History[edit]

The station first went on-the-air May 6, 1987 on VHF channel 11. Using the calls W11BJ, it originally aired an analog signal from the Rattlesnake Mountain transmitter site of Connecticut's Fox affiliate WTIC-TV. The station was an Independent that aired local shows to a senior retirement community in Farmington, Connecticut. It used a live skycam weather forecast which consisted of a character generator and a home video camera with shots of the window from the transmitter building.

The owner of the station was the Chase family who also owned WTIC. In 2004 when LIN TV bought W11BJ, there was a construction permit approved to broadcast this station on UHF channel 28 from a new transmitter on Mount Tom in Holyoke. During the building of this transmitter, WWLP temporarily put on a simulcast of sister station and UPN affiliate WCTX via an off-air pickup.

In early-2006, W28CT signed-on from the top of Mount Tom and the W11BJ transmitter was shut down. Right from the start, the station began to simulcast WWLP full-time. LIN TV had initially changed the call sign to WXCW-CA in reference to The CW in anticipation of it becoming an affiliate of that network. This affiliation eventually went to cable-only WB affiliate "WBQT". As a result, this channel's call sign was changed again to WFXQ-CA referring to a possible Fox affiliation.

This caused rumors on several television industry message boards that it would become an affiliate of that network or even simulcast Boston's WFXT. Speculation also existed that WFXQ might affiliate with Fox's new sister network, MyNetworkTV. At the time, cable television viewers in the Springfield/Holyoke market received Fox from WTIC and WFXT as well as MyNetworkTV from WCTX.

On November 16, 2007, the Springfield Republican reported that ABC affiliate WGGB-TV would be launching a Fox affiliate on a new second digital subchannel which was expected to launch at the end of that year. This was ultimately delayed until the end of March 2008 when the subchannel took on a primary Fox and secondary MyNetworkTV affiliation. Up to that time, Springfield held the distinction of being the largest television market without a Fox affiliate of its own. LIN TV was unsuccessful at obtaining the affiliation because of poor negotiating skills with the network.

Until December 9, 2008, WFXQ's analog signal transmitted on the same frequency as CW affiliate WLWC in East Freetown, Massachusetts. On February 4, 2009 after the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) approved a construction permit, the station moved its transmitter next to WWLP on Provin Mountain in the Feeding Hills section of Agawam. Another construction permit from the FCC allowed the station to "flash-cut" to digital sometime after June 12, 2009 although at the time the station was still assigned a "-CA" suffix.

Eventually, the FCC updated its listing and this channel began using the WFXQ-CD calls. During several previous NFL seasons, there had been an instance when this channel was not repeating WWLP. On Saturday nights at 6:30, it aired Totally Patriots. At this point, the future is uncertain for the station. The only network currently not offered over-the-air in Springfield is The CW. Although this is seen right now on cable-only "WBQT", WFXQ could assume the affiliation in order to provide access to the network for non-cable subscribers.

On March 21, 2014, Media General announced that it would purchase LIN Media and its stations, including WWLP, in a $1.6 billion merger.[1] The merger was completed on December 19.[2]

References[edit]

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