Canberra community radio reaches new heights

Canberra community radio listeners are getting better reception now that the switch on of a new and higher community radio transmission site at Poppet HIll in Canberra.

A consortium of not-for-profit broadcasters, ArtSoundFM, 1CMS FM, and 1WAY FM, will manage the new facility, the culmination of eight years of planning.

The Poppet Hill transmitter site replaces older facilities at Black Mountain Tower. Because it is at a slightly higher elevation and is using new equipment, the new site will deliver a
stronger and higher quality signal to many of the 63,000 people who, according to the 2014 McNair Ingenuity Survey, listen to community radio in Canberra.

Project Manager Chris Deacon, from ArtSoundFM, has told radioinfo it was an excellent example of technical collaboration between community broadcasters.

The ACT Government played a key role by allocating the land at Poppet Hill.

“We also thank Queensland based broadcast transmission supplier N-Com Pty Ltd for its support in establishing the site, which will be exclusively used by non-commercial community radio stations,” said Deacon.

Community radio volunteers, members and listeners have raised funds for the project, which has cost about $500,000. It is expected to produce longer-term savings for the four
stations. The Federal Government-supported Community Broadcasting Foundation has contributed to the project, including the cost of new digital links from studios to Poppet Hill.

Chris Deacon said there has been “minimal disruption to services during the switchover,” and all stations will continue to broadcast on their current frequencies.

ArtSound FM is Canberra’s Music and Arts station. It is based at the Manuka Arts Centre and broadcasts on 92.7 and 90.3 in Tuggeranong.  1WAY FM is a Christian station in the Canberra region located in Fyshwick, broadcasting on 91.9 (94.3 in Tuggeranong).  1CMS is Canberra’s multicultural service community radio station, based in Holder and broadcasting on 91.1. 1CMS has over 30 different ethnic languages and programs, and continues to attract new emerging communities in Canberra.

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