Saturday, June 18, 2011

106.9 The Zone gets zapped, will simulcast 107.5 The Eagle KGLK

It appears 106.9 FM is not in 'The Zone' anymore. My bad attempts at clever writing aside, it really appears KHPT 106.9 The Zone's days are numbered. That means Houston is down to two alternative music stations now (94.5 The Buzz KTBZ and 103.7 KHJK).

According to All Access, the station is going to simulcast sister Cox Radio station 107.5 The Eagle KGLK starting this Monday. In fact Wikipedia already lists this has happening on Monday, but in the past tense. The online encyclopedia also erased the KHPT page and re-directed it to KGLK. @serenasays pointed out on Twitter that "The Zone" Facebook page is gone, but I found the station's website and Twitter account still active.

Growing up in Houston, I remember both of the 106.9 and 107.5 frequencies being spotty in certain areas of town. This is why Clear Channel moved The Buzz from 107.5 to 94.5 more than a decade ago. The theory is, now Cox can take the Lake Jackson frequency 107.5 and combine it with the Conroe frequency 106.9 to make The Eagle have a larger, more reliable coverage area. Cox stole Dean and Rog from 93.7 The Arrow KKRW, so they want their morning team to have the best possible signal strength I am sure.

However, I'm not sure how Houston listeners will react to having one station on two frequencies. Heck, many are still recovering from Kidd Kraddick replacing Maria Todd and Brad Booker on Mix 96.5 KHMX!

Cox Radio did not give '106.9 The Zone' very long to succeed. The station only debuted in November 2010. It was always an alternative music format, but the format was tweaked over time. A hot programmer from Miami was even brought in to run the station. The one thing the station did not do is offer a specialty show to a popular Houston McBlogger that covers Houston media (that could have been the saving grace).

So there you have it, Houston loses an alternative station, but gains another classic rock station (sort of). I know a lot of Channel 39 photographers that will be upset.  So enjoy 106.9 The Zone all this weekend, because Monday...it's [zapped]. COMMENT: Click to leave your thoughts on this post here