The Boston Radio Dial: WUNR(AM)

Who, What, Where

Community: Brookline
Frequency: 1600 kHz
Class: B
Ownership: Champion Broadcasting Systems, Inc.
(Herbert Hoffman family)
Studio: 60 Temple Place
2nd Floor
Boston, MA 02111-1324
Transmitter: 750 Saw Mill Brook Parkway
Newton, MA 02459-3647
Phones:
Office +1 617 367 9003
Format: Leased-time ethnic

Technical Parameters

WUNR broadcasts from an array in the Oak Hill section of Newton, which was constructed in 2007–2008, and which is shared with WKOX (1200 Newton) and WRCA (1330 Watertown). The five 198-foot, unpainted, unlit guyed towers are arranged in a rough pentagon, and were constructed on the site of WUNR's previous facility, which had two tall towers and operated 5 kW-U, DA-1. The current facility is 20 kW full time, with different patterns day and night; full-power program test authority was granted in February, 2009, and the new facility was licensed in May, culminating a seven-year process to get the upgrade approved by both the FCC and the City of Newton. (The original application was prepared by the engineering firm of Hatfield and Dawson; DuTreil, Lundin, and Rackley assisted in the proof of performance.) The new pattern protects co-channel WWRL (New York), WMCR (Oneida), and WEHH (Elmira Heights), all in New York State, plus a non-existent Canadian 1600 in Cornwall, Ontario; it also reduced grandfathered prohibited overlap with WSMN (1590 Nashua) and eliminated overlap with WARV (1590 Warwick).

Station History

The 1600 story in Greater Boston began in 1948, with the debut of WVOM, one of many small independent stations that went on the air after the war.

In 1955, WVOM was sold to Herbert Hoffman's Champion Broadcasting and became WBOS, calls that had previously been used by Westinghouse for the shortwave sister station to WBZ/WBZA. From that time until the present, most of the station's broadcast day has been taken up by foreign-language programming directed at Boston's many ethnic communities.

WBOS added FM service on 92.9 MHz in the late 1950s, and as the FM station began breaking away with its own programming, Hoffman changed the AM calls, in 1976, to WUNR. The new calls were meant to reflect the station's status as a ``United Nations of Radio'' for Greater Boston. Hoffman sold the FM station in 1984.

In the 1980s, WUNR's studios moved into the Hoffman Building on North Washington Street in Boston's North End.

In 2002, WUNR received a construction permit for an upgrade to 20 kW-U DA-2; actual construction on the site began in late 2006, and the new facility was licensed in 2009. Around this time, WUNR also moved studios, from the Hoffman Building to 60 Temple Place in the Downtown Crossing area.

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This station profile was written by the editors of The Archives @ BostonRadio.org. We have no relationship with the station; please send any comments or questions about their programming directly to the station. Network connectivity courtesy of MIT CSAIL.

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