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Ideastream Public Media announces next phase of merger with WKSU

WKSU and IPM

WKSU will officially become the only NPR news station in Northeast Ohio as of March 28, and that means some big changes on the radio dial for listeners.

Ideastream Public Media announced Thursday, 89.7 WKSU will exclusively carry NPR programs including Morning Edition, All Things Considered and Marketplace, while classical music, formerly carried on 104.9 WCLV moves to 90.3.

It’s the next phase of the merger between WKSU and Ideastream, announced in September.

The signal swap means programming changes on the two NPR stations. General Manager Jenny Northern declined to comment on which shows might be canceled, but she said the new schedule would be made public very soon.

According to a press release, the WCPN and WKSU news teams will combine into a unified newsroom with a promise of expanded journalism, including additional midday and weekend newscasts.

Ideastream Chief Content Officer Mark Rosenberger said details are still in the works.

“News happens all day and adding local newscasts, plus a journalist hosting that daypart, will provide listeners with a more complete and consistent dose of daily news throughout the day on WKSU,” he said.

In a press release, Ideastream promised a new Akron/Canton news hub.

“We intend to have a team of reporters committed to covering news in Akron, Canton and the surrounding areas,” Rosenberger said, without elaborating.

He added that a new lineup of hosts will be announced soon.

The signal swap gives Ideastream’s classical music station a much stronger transmitter and broadcast footprint in the region, while 104.9 joins WKSU’s network of transmitters providing coverage of local, statewide, national and global news for listeners in 22 counties in Northeast Ohio.