A news story on February 19 indicated that CTV was looking to sell its CKX station in Brandon, Manitoba. The CBC agreement to broadcast its signal over CKX's tower ends in the summer.
The advent of digital programming and the costs associated with it means that CKX is not needed by the CBC to get it signal to the Brandon area. CTV appears to have no interest in the market for its own use despite the fact that it serves over 125,000 people at present.
One wonders how WDAZ can operate in Grand Forks in North Dakota and broadcast in digital no less.
Smaller market stations are threatened all over Canada at the moment as debt laden companies look to cut costs. Winnipeg has already played the part of pawn with stations like Joytv and CityTV changing hands repeatedly.
We already know that Joytv constributes next to nothing to local content and Citytv got rid of its evening newscast.
Now it looks like Brandon will have to get its TV news from Winnipeg. That is, if we don't lose our local news ourselves.
On the day before Christmas, the Free Press reported that investors had bought the Boyd Building. The investors also bought the two adjacent properties.
The building was constructed in 1912 and stands 9 stories tall. From about 1913 on, the Boyd has housed medical and dental offices. This remains true today although the building has been in need of a little upgrading for some time. A list of some of the businesses that have occupied the tower is here.
The new owners are also the builders of the Canada Post sorting plant being built at the airport.
In the Free Press story said the owners have come up with a $30 million proposal to renovate the building but also construct a 420 parking stall on the two adjacent properties, one of which is a vacant lot. The parkade would be 12 stories tall, slightly lower than the Boyd building itself.
The picture in the Free Press indicates that a lab and pharmacy would occupy the first two floors of the building and the other 10 floors would be parking.
Given what we have seen with the Winnipeg Regional Health Authority building on Main Street, I believe the city should be very cautious about how this parking lot will look relative to the the streetscape. Moreover, access to the parking lot has to be given careful consideration. I am curious to see where the parking entrances and exits will be for the parkade.
The renovation and new construction of the Boyd might be very good or very bad. City Hall needs to make sure that Portage doesn't become more of an eyesore with a dreary parkade facade and ill thought out entrances to the lot.