WSYR-TV, virtual channel 9 (UHF digital channel 17), is an ABC-affiliated television station licensed to Syracuse, New York, United States. The station is owned by Nexstar Media Group. WSYR-TV's studios are located on Bridge Street (off NY 290) in East Syracuse (a village of DeWitt), and its transmitter is located on Sevier Road in Pompey. On cable, the station is available on Charter Spectrum channel 9.
Channel 9 was the last of Syracuse's major network affiliates to sign on, doing so September 9, 1962 after a channel shuffle involving rival WHEN-TV and Rochester's WROC-TV allowed a third analog VHF station in Syracuse. The original call letters were WNYS-TV (now assigned to Syracuse's MyNetworkTV affiliate). It signed-on under the ownership of a group of local investors. The station has always been an ABC affiliate. Channel 9's original studios were located in the basement of the Shoppingtown shopping center on Erie Boulevard in DeWitt. Fire overtook the studios in April 1967, forcing the station to temporarily move to WCNY-TV (channel 24)'s studios in Liverpool until its facilities were rebuilt.
In 1969, then-owner W.R.G. Baker Television Corporation applied for a WNYS-TV translator on channel 7, W07BA; this facility, serving Syracuse and nearby Nedrow, came on the air in 1972. W07BA, which later moved its second city of license to DeWitt, remained a repeater of channel 9 until 2014; its license was canceled on March 24, 2014. The station was purchased by The Outlet Company in 1971.
First call sign change
The Outlet Company sold WNYS in 1978 to WNYS Acquisition Corp., which was a joint partnership of Coca-Cola's New York bottling division and former Washington Post president Larry H. Israel. The call sign was then changed to WIXT on March 1 with "IX" standing for Roman numeral 9. The Ackerley Group bought the station in 1982 and the -TV suffix was added to the WIXT calls. The station moved its studios to the current location on Bridge Street in 1985.
In 1999, WIXT-TV implemented a digital central-casting control hub for Ackerley's New York State cluster that included stations in Rochester, Watertown, Binghamton, Elmira, and Utica to help with the upcoming digital television transition. The central-casting still exists today; however, now that Nexstar owns WSYR-TV and most of the other stations in New York State that were previously owned by Ackerley, the hub is in the process of being relocated to now sister station WROC-TV. Other stations throughout Ackerley's New York cluster have received updated studios.
Second call sign change
Clear Channel Communications (now iHeartMedia) bought Ackerley in 2001, putting WIXT-TV under the same ownership as WSYR radio (570 AM). The call sign was then changed to the current WSYR-TV on June 13, 2005. The change caused a small amount of confusion, as the WSYR-TV call letters had last resided on rival NBC affiliate WSTM-TV from its sign-on in 1950 until its sale to the Times Mirror Company in 1980. The WIXT (AM) call letters were moved to sister station WLFH in Little Falls, New York.
On April 20, 2007, Clear Channel entered into an agreement to sell its entire television division to Newport Television, a broadcasting group established by Providence Equity Partners. WSYR radio was not part of the sale as it remains owned and operated by iHeartMedia. Nevertheless, the WSYR-TV call letters were retained.
WSYR-DT2 was affiliated with the Variety Television Network (operated by Newport Television) until its demise in early-January 2009. This station once served on cable as the default ABC affiliate in Northern New York State communities such as Ogdensburg, Potsdam, Massena, and Malone. Since then, most of those areas have been replaced with WSYR-TV's sister station and fellow ABC affiliate WWTI. However, both were available in these markets for a short time with WVNY from Burlington, Vermont now serving Malone.
On July 19, 2012, Newport Television announced the sale of WSYR-TV and all of its stations in New York State except WXXA-TV in Albany and WHAM-TV in Rochester to the Nexstar Broadcasting Group as part of a 22-station deal that involved Nexstar, Sinclair Broadcast Group and Cox Media Group. The transaction was completed on December 3.
|TV stations in New York|
|WABC, New York City|
|TV stations in Central New York, including Syracuse|
|WSTM 3 (NBC) |
WTVH 5 (CBS)
WSYR 9 (ABC)
WONO-CA 11 (COR)
WSTQ-LP 14 (CW)
WTVU-CD 22 (COR)
WCNY 24 (PBS)
WWLF-LP 35 (AMGTV)
W42EB-D 42 (Ind.)
WNYS 43 (MNTV)
WBLZ-LD 49 (Ind.)
WHSU-CD 51 (HSN)
WNYI 52 (Daystar)
WSPX 56 (Ion)
WSYT 68 (Fox)