Springfield PBS Station's Broadcast Frequency Sold For $57 Million

Apr 14, 2017

At a recent FCC auction, the broadcast frequency for WGBY in Springfield sold for $57 million.

The station will move to a different channel. The license for the current frequency is owned by WGBH in Boston, and the money will go into its endowment, with annual disbursements to WGBY.

"We will probably increase local content, education services -- things that we've been doing for a long time, but things that we haven't been able to enhance and grow because of financial reasons," said Lynn Page, the station's acting general manager.

Changes in technology help explain the move. Cell phone companies are eager for more bandwidth, especially with more people streaming video on their phones, and today's television technology means broadcasters can do more with less.

"Digital has advanced TV broadcast so much that...the amount of spectrum it used to take to do one channel, you can now do multiple channels, " said Jeanne Hopkins with WGBH.

The move to a different channel could take two years to implement.