Boston prepares for low-powered community radio station

The Boston airwaves will soon add a station, one with content tailored towards community news and local performers, Mayor Walsh's office announced Thursday. Broadcasting on 102.9 FM under the call signal WBCA, the new station will be operated by the Boston Neighborhood Network (BNN) with a mission of delivering community news and providing community participation opportunities. It will first go on air in June.

"We are proud and grateful that Mayor Walsh has asked us to take on the task of developing a radio presence that will truly represent the people and the cultures of Boston's diverse neighborhoods," BNN General Manager Curtis Henderson said in a statement. "BNN has the background and experience in community media to make this a success."

WBCA will air on the low-power FM (LPFM) radio station from 6 p.m. to 2 a.m. daily. To begin, the station will air BNN programming, including BNN News each night at 9 p.m. The station will also develop late-night programming as an outlet for local artists, bands, musicians, poets and performers.

To gather input from residents on the station's programming, BNN will hold three public meetings: - Wednesday, May 18, 6:30 a.m. at the Roxbury Innovation Center, 2300 Washington St.- Wednesday, June 15, 6:30 p.m. at the Joseph P. Tynan School, 650 E 4th St.- Wednesday, June 22, 6:30 p.m. at the Jackson/Mann K-8 School, 40 Armington St. The LPFM signal will be shared with Lasell College, which will air its content from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., and with Global Ministries, which will broadcast from 2 a.m. to 10 a.m.

The signal is shared by the three organizations, the mayor's office said, because multiple qualified community organizations applied for the lone available LPFM signal in the Boston radio market.