Like the rest of the country, all five boroughs of NYC are heavily wired for cable. The NTSC channels seemed unaffected by the Trade Towers disaster. This is because of cable or fiber links. But the long-delayed and newly installed HDTV antennas, and most tragically, personnel, for PBS, NBC, ABC, and a few other stations were lost.
The major local cable company, Time Warner, points out that engineers and others are concentrating of reestablishing temporary NTSC antennas before HDTV transmitters/antennas. They plan on using a hilltop site and existing tower across the Hudson River in New Jersey. But already the not-in-my-backyard
syndrome has set in, with local residents trying to block the antennas.
A TWC cable rep also claims that, despite having had fiber links to local networks, that they can't get HDTV delivered via cable or fiber that would reestablish the lost HDTV links. The claim concerns fiber and hardware costs. Yet before the 9/11 disaster, TWC was delivering PBS, ABC, and NBC in HDTV (Fox in DTV). They also provided, and still are, CBS, HBO, and Showtime HDTV.
Locally, TWC's network system is dependent on Scientific Atlanta (SA) set-top HDTV cable converters. But SA has been very slow at delivering its 2000HD converter nationwide. Reportedly, SA's updated model, the SA3100HD, won't arrive until next year. So there's a double whammy: A weak claim they can't get HDTV signals from local networks to their mid-Manhattan headquarters via one of the densest fiber optic mazes in the world (beneath Manhattan's streets). Plus a HDTV cable-converter supplier that mysteriously can't produce enough converters. Overcoming these limitations, while broadcasters rebuild local HDTV transmitters, could help prevent the serious crippling of HDTV growth. -- John