WGBH said it plans to air more of its popular TV programs on the radio starting Tuesday as part of its effort to reinvent 89.7 FM as Boston’s next full-time news and information radio station – and set it apart from competitors that dominate the market.
WGBH officials said the station will draw from its catalog of TV programs such as “Beat The Press,’’ “Nova,’’ and “The News Hour’’ and adapt them for 89.7 FM. The station also will give WGBH’s “Greater Boston’’ TV host Emily Rooney and “Beat the Press’’ commentator Callie Crossley a midday weekday show to discuss local news. Their untitled show, set to start Jan. 4, will serve as the centerpiece of the new programming lineup that debuts Tuesday.
The moves are part of WGBH’s purchase in September of classical music station WCRB-FM 99.5 for $14 million. That acquisition allowed WGBH to shift its classical music programming to WCRB to preserve that station as Boston’s only full-time classical outlet. It also enabled WGBH to convert 89.7 to an all news and talk station in an attempt to compete with WBZ-AM 1030 and WBUR-FM 90.9. A smaller NPR affiliate, WUMB at the University of Massachusetts in Boston, also offers news and music programming. …
Paul La Camera, WBUR’s general manager, said WGBH’s new programming “sounds quite creative. It’s very ambitious right out of the box. We wish them well.’’