The City of Kirksville issued a permit to build a radio tower planned to play “educational and fiddle music” as featured content, but there’s much more to be done before it is built.
The Kirksville City Council granted John Shewmaker a special use permit Sept. 19 to build a radio tower on the west side of town. The permit allows Shewmaker to construct a 100-watt tower for a non-profit FM station at 612 N Boundary St., currently a vacant residential property near Patryla Park.
However, this project is far from certain. Shewmaker holds a Federal Communications Commission construction permit that expires in January 2017, and there’s a lot to do between now and then.
The permit was approved unanimously with two conditions, according to city concil meeting minutes. One condiditon calls for the construction of a 6-foot fence to surround the tower and building and the second condition states the permit will only be for a three-year period with an extension possible, according to city council meeting minutes.
Shewmaker, a resident of Columbia, Missouri, has hopes of creating a community radio station, similar to stations currently broadcasting in St. Louis, Kansas City and Columbia.
Shewmaker says steps still need to be made including the two conditions from the council, citing federal licensing and construction as other barriers that must be traversed before the station starts broadcasting.
“[The permit] was an essential step, but it was only one of many,” says Shewmaker.