24-hour local news channel MI News 26 and 24-hour national news channel NewsNet have broken ground on an expansion to their studios in northern Michigan, and will soon be providing new opportunities to local students through the new expansion.
The 3,500 square foot addition will consist of 3 studios, each with their own control rooms, as well as a new, state-of-the-art master control room overseeing the operations of MI News 26, MI TV 12, Cadillac Community Television and NewsNet, a national news channel that was launched January 1 by the MI News 26 team, and operates out of the station’s facility in Cadillac.
A combination of factors led to the decision to add additional studio space to MI News 26’s 2,200 square foot building.
“When we launched NewsNet, we wanted to operate ‘lean and mean’ from the existing facilities of our local TV stations with the idea that we would add additional space once the network was on-air,” explained Eric Wotila, General Manager of MI News 26 and President of NewsNet, “Now that we’re up and running, we’re thrilled to be moving forward with this new addition, which will benefit not only the numerous TV stations we operate, but also local students.”
In addition to being used to produce both local and national TV broadcasts, the new studios will create new opportunities for local students through an expanded relationship with the Wexford-Missaukee Intermediate School District.
The additional space will give Digital Media Production students a chance to regularly visit the new facility and gain hands-on experience in a professional broadcast environment.
“It kind of becomes, to a certain extent, a little ‘farm club,’ not only for MI News 26 but for other venues across the state or country,” explained WMISD Superintendent David Cox, “You want a kid that has experience in digital media production in a TV station? Here it is!”
The new studios are being constructed by Cadillac-based Axis Building Services, and are expected to be completed and on-air this fall.