WKYT-TV is a dual CBS/CW-affiliated television station licensed to Lexington, Kentucky, United States, serving the east-central part of the Commonwealth of Kentucky. It broadcasts a high definition digital signal on UHF channel 36 (or virtual channel 27 via PSIP) from a transmitter east of the intersection of I-75 and U.S. 60 in Lexington. Owned by Gray Television, WKYT maintains studios on Winchester Road (near U.S. 60), within a mile from the studios of competing ABC affiliate WTVQ-DT (channel 36).
The station is also received on cable and satellite throughout much of eastern, southern and northern Kentucky. In addition, the station's newscasts (with the exception of the weekday 5–6 a.m. and 10 a.m., and weekend morning programs) are carried on Charter Spectrum digital channel 422 in portions of Northern Kentucky located near the Cincinnati metropolitan area (although some newscasts, especially on weekend evenings, may be delayed or preempted due to sporting events carried by CBS, which air on WKRC-TV in that area).
WKYT signed on September 30, 1957 as WKXP-TV, owned by Community Broadcast Partners, a local group headed by Frederic Gregg, Charles Wright and Harry Feingold. It was a primary CBS affiliate, sharing ABC with WLEX-TV.
After only one year, Community Broadcast Partners merged with what eventually became Taft Broadcasting. The new owners changed the calls to the current WKYT-TV. Taft also switched the station's primary affiliation to ABC, relegating CBS to secondary status. This was a very unusual arrangement for a two-station market, especially one as small as Lexington. In most two-station markets, ABC, as the smallest and weakest network, was relegated to secondary clearances on one or both of the existing stations. However, ABC president Leonard Goldenson had been friends with the Taft family for many years, and it is likely that the Tafts wanted to get their new purchase in line with most of their other stations (including company flagship WKRC-TV in Cincinnati).
Kentucky Central Insurance Company bought the station in 1967. When WBLG-TV (channel 62, now WTVQ-DT, channel 36) signed on in 1968, WKYT opted to return to CBS full-time. In 1985, Kentucky Central bought WKYH-TV in Hazard, changed its calls to WYMT-TV and made it a semi-satellite of WKYT. While WYMT has its own studios in Hazard and airs its own newscasts, some internal operations are shared with WKYT. WKYT was the first, and currently only, Lexington station with any presence at all in the eastern portion of the market.
In 1993, after a protracted fraud investigation forced Kentucky Central into bankruptcy, WKYT and WYMT were acquired by Gray Television. At this stage, WKYT was known on air as 'KYT' instead of WKYT.
WKYT-DT2, branded as The CW Lexington, is the CW-affiliated second digital subchannel of WKYT-TV, broadcasting in 720p high definition on UHF channel 36.2 (or virtual channel 27.2 via PSIP). The subchannel is available on DirecTV channel 14, Dish Network channel 28, and Charter Spectrum channel 5 in Lexington and channel 99 in the surrounding suburbs.
The subchannel was originally branded as "UPN Lexington" (or "UKYT") and served as Lexington's UPN affiliate until September 2006. That month, the subchannel was rebranded as "CWKYT" (a portmanteau of the subchannel's affiliated network and the station's callsign) until January 2013. Until October 2006, Louisville WB affiliate (later CW affiliate) WBKI-TV was available on Lexington cable systems; WBKI was later dropped from Insight systems in the Lexington area, to accommodate for the new CW. Baltimore CW station WNUV was the formerly designated WB/CW station for DirecTV in the Lexington market.
On August 21, 2007, WKYT began broadcasting its "CWKYT" second digital subchannel in high definition. This made it one of a handful of stations in the country who transmit their main channel and at least one subchannel in HD. However, although both CBS and The CW prefer their programming be broadcast at 1080i resolution, WKYT's two HD channels were transmitted over-the-air in 720p in order to minimize the loss in image quality (feeds to cable providers use the full 1080i). Since the move to digital channel 36 in September 2010, CWKYT's over-the-air transmission reverted to 4:3 SD, although the digital cable feed remained in HD and WKYT's main channel remained in 720p. As of June 18, 2013, WKYT's main signal has been upgraded to full 1080i HD and The CW Lexington signal was upgraded to 720p HD.
|TV stations in Kentucky|
| WKYT, Lexington|
|TV stations in Kentucky|
| WKYT-DT2, Lexington|
|TV stations in Central Kentucky Bluegrass region, including Lexington and Frankfort|
| WOBZ-LD 9 (BUZZR) |
W10BM 10 (AMGTV/WHT)
WLEX 18 (NBC)
WKYT 27 (CBS)
WKSO 29 (PBS)
WKHA 35 (PBS)
WTVQ 36 (ABC)
WKMR 38 (PBS)
WKLE 46 (PBS)
WVTN-LP 48 (Rel.)
WKON 52 (PBS)
WDKY 56 (Fox)
WYMT 57 (CBS)
WLJC 65 (Cozi)
WUPX 67 (Ion)