ENGAGING THE COMMUNITY
OUR CAPITAL CAMPAIGN GOAL
Through the construction and ownership of a permanent broadcast center located at the Research & Technology Park at Temperance and Highway 168 in Clovis, CA, Valley Public Radio will engage the San Joaquin Valley community, strengthen alliances with national, state and local organizations, and expand premier local news coverage in our region.
Construction Update Blog...
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Why is the station moving?
A strong and committed public radio presence provides an enhanced quality of life in our region. Since its founding in 1975, Valley Public Radio has been an expression and symbol of the local community. Through the generous support of members, local businesses, and foundations, the station has evolved into a vital and trusted community resource, ready to expand the news coverage and cultural life presentations reflecting the traditions of the San Joaquin Valley.
As other media decrease their role in local stories and reporting, the demand for Valley Public Radio’s immediate presence is more important than ever, reflecting the community’s desire for access to information and dialogue. With limited studio and production space, we are unable to sustain local content flow while also feeding state and national media organizations wanting access to the San Joaquin Valley. Music and cultural presentations are also limited by the lack of studio space.
The Research and Technology Business Park in Clovis is an ideal location for a permanent home for Valley Public Radio. FM89’s transmitter is located at Meadow Lakes and there is a clear line of sight to the transmitter, without any structural blockages. Suggested locations such as downtown Fresno were unsuitable because of the tall buildings that would obstruct signal transmission. The Technology Park location is ideal for the signal, and the purchase price was more than reasonable. The owners were not only willing to sell, but have made generous gifts in support of this project. The goal is to raise the next million dollars and relocate to the new broadcast center. Our intention is to transfer the current lease to a mortgage payment. In ten years (or sooner), with a fixed rate loan, we will own the broadcast center and the $100,000 spent on the lease/mortgage can be redirected to sustaining local operations.
The new facility is much larger. Why the additional space?
The area devoted to administrative offices remains virtually the same with the exception of space to house student interns and additional volunteers. Nearly all of the expansion is dedicated to studio and production space.
Notable recent expansion has been in local stories produced by our team of journalists. This team requires access to production technology, work space, and phones. When performance artists are in the studio, production capabilities become very limited. Lack of soundproofing necessitates the news team leaving in search of quiet space to work and make phone calls. While we are flexible for the short-term, this is not sustainable over time.
In January 2014, the news team was awarded the RTDNA award for small markets for local news coverage. Partnerships with The James Irvine Foundation, California Health Care Foundation, California Humanities, and The California Endowment have encouraged and fostered the coverage of local stories. In early 2015, the station was awarded three Golden Mike awards for its news reporting from the Southern California Radio and Television News Directors Association, the first such awards the station has won.
Because the station is a resource for strengthening the civic and cultural life of the region, space is needed not only for cultural presentations and news reporting, but also to serve as a community gathering space. Valley Public Radio has an important role as a convener and an educator in the community serving many audiences on various platforms.
Is radio a valid investment for the future?
A recent survey stated that 84% of radio listeners are still tuning in to their local stations. The simplicity of radio waves being transmitted through the air, to be received by a relatively unsophisticated piece of equipment that translates the waves into what you hear, will continue to be around for a very long time. Valley Public Radio transmits the voice of our region and, through additional technologies like streaming, is local and everywhere at the same time.
How does building a new facility engage the community?
A new facility fosters expansion of our local coverage and community engagement. This will give the station additional opportunity to cover the life of a growing and thriving San Joaquin Valley. Local and regional partnerships will be expanded, bringing us together for the enrichment of the Valley and beyond.
Students will have the opportunity to learn about the journalism practices of public radio, the philanthropy, music and business of non-profit organizations and their role in developing healthy communities.
Community groups will have an opportunity to express their voices in the new facility, as well as come together to create solutions for local issues.
The new facility will inspire deeper engagement with the community in ways we have not yet imagined. Instead of dedicating lease funds to operations, these funds can be committed directly to programming, a direct benefit to the listener.
How does Valley Public Radio connect with the cultural life of the Valley?
Expanding local coverage includes the cultural life of the Valley. The station proudly presents musical groups including young artists from around the Valley, guest artists with the local symphonies, and short readings by local authors reflecting the stories of the Valley. These collaborative opportunities encourage community pride.
Cultural presentations help us understand our past, and make it possible for us to better plan for our future. The San Joaquin Valley is rich in culture and traditions that make the Valley our home, and Valley Public Radio has proudly supported numerous cultural offerings over many years.
When will construction begin, and when does the station plan to move?
Groundbreaking is scheduled for mid-May 2015, with a move-in date of early 2016. We must raise one million dollars before relocating to the new broadcast center.
What is the total cost of the construction project?
The parcel for the facility was paid in full with funds raised in 2013. Pre-construction funds were raised in 2014. The total for the new facility will be approximately $4.5 million.
How is Valley Public Radio moving into the future?
We celebrate the generosity that has helped raise this money as well as the purchase of the parcel back in 2012. As we embark upon this campaign we are counting on our most devoted listeners and supporters to step forward and participate in this project. This is a crucial moment for the station and for the community. Helping us raise the $1 million goal promotes a critical and vital voice for the San Joaquin Valley. This is about gaining access to information not only globally but about what is happening in our Valley and how we as engaged citizens come together. We are only limited by our enthusiasm and imagination, and now we have a question for you: Will you commit to being a part of this public radio service?
Our leadership has been bold and strategic, and worked quietly to reach the groundbreaking milestone. If the enhanced quality of life that is provided by a strong and committed public radio presence is important to you, step forward and join these leaders and others in their passion. Your support will help build a permanent forum for information, expand local news reporting, and further the appreciation of the many cultural traditions of the San Joaquin Valley.