Times Square TV transmission center in the works

A 358-foot multiple master-antenna transmission tower and an emergency power back-up system is planned for construction in New York City’s Times Square.

To be located on the roof of the 4 Times Square office building, the facility is being targeted to New York television broadcasters as a backup antenna site in the aftermath of the loss of transmission facilities at the World Trade Center.

Drawing of 4 Times Square. Partial West Elevation: Proposed Antenna Scheme

The Durst Organization, a privately owned real estate company, is developing the new facility. The antenna will rise to 1,142 feet above mean sea level. The developers said tests indicate it will provide nearly 98 percent of the coverage that was available from atop the World Trade Center.

Eight FM radio stations are already in place at the existing 4 Times Square rooftop broadcast center. The new tower will incorporate the facilities of those broadcasters.

Construction is slated to begin in February. The facility is expected to be operational in the summer of 2003.

Since the loss of the World Trade Center antenna, nearly all-major New York television stations have used the Empire State Building as its primary transmission center. Developer Jody Durst said an advantage of the new facility is that it will enable broadcasters to temporarily relocate their primary operations from the Empire State Building, providing that structure with an opportunity to complete the upgrade of its capabilities.

The new facility, said Durst, will accommodate “plug and play” station operation and provide around-the-clock ventilation and air conditioning capacity with an emergency power system and parallel generators sized for full-power transmitter operation.

Opened in 1999, the 51-story, 1.6-million-square-foot 4 Times Square--also known as the Conde’ Nast Building after its largest tenant--was the first new office tower constructed as part of the Times Square redevelopment movement of the 1990s.

For more information visit www.durst.org.

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