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Thursday, August 20, 2015

Classical music to leave Houston's 91.7 FM

Classical 91.7 KUHA being bought by KSBJ to become NGEN Radio

Classical to move from 91.7 FM to 88.7 HD-2 and other platforms; potential sale for 91.7 FM

Classical 91.7 KUHA is leaving its FM dial position and going digital in a move approved today by the University of Houston Board of Regents.

This will be the first time in decades that a Houston FM station will not air classical music (before full-time NPR broadcasts, 88.7 mostly featured classical; 92.1 KRTS was 24 hour classical until 2004).

The station will move it's 24-hour classical programming to 88.7 HD-2.

"We are making this change in recognition of the growing popularity, superior broadcast quality and greater efficiency of digital broadcasting," said Lisa Shumate, associate vice president and general manager of Houston Public Media. "Placing our focus on HD radio and digital streaming for our classical music programming enables us to make the best use of technology and resources to continue providing the music and arts and culture content that our listeners enjoy."

Lisa Shumate addresses Classical 97.1 sale

In addition to HD radio, Houston Public Media has a variety of ways listeners can access its classical music programming: online at and free applications like iHeartRadio & TuneIn, and via television at TV 8.5.

HPM says for the near future, Classical 91.7 will continue its 24-hour, seven-day analog radio broadcast, but announcements will begin letting listeners know of the station's impending departure on all of its platforms.

"We want to make this change as smooth as possible for our classical listeners and minimize any inconvenience," said Shumate. "We will be communicating across all of our platforms in the coming months to ensure that listeners are well informed about the availability of HD radios for car or home, the ease of use, as well as the free online streaming and applications now available."

So what does this mean for 91.7 FM, which is more synonymous with KTRU's Rice Radio than a symphony?

A spokesperson for Houston Public Media tells the organization will entertain offers for the 91.7 transmission tower and license from potential buyers.

 Who has some cash to give me for 91.7 radio?

Classical 91.7 KUHA being bought by KSBJ to become NGEN Radio

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