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Indigenous-owned radio station begins broadcasting in Vancouver

A new signal is broadcasting in Vancouver. Tune in to 106.3
A new radio station connected to an Indigenous group based in northern B.C. is launching in Vancouver.

A new signal is broadcasting in Vancouver.

Tune in to 106.3 FM and you'll find the Journey is testing out things right now; going by the call letter CJNY, the station is linked to Canada's First Nations Radio (CFNR) in northern BC and Northern Native Broadcasting Terrace (NNB).

"CJNY FM 106.3 is undergoing on-air signal testing in the Lower Mainland December 5th to 26th," states the CJNY website.

Right now the station is playing mostly music, with a focus on classic and Canadian artists, including Van Halen, the Tragically Hip, and the Trews. On air and on the website, direction is being sought for what the station should play and for any questions or concerns.

Long time coming

The station Journey 106.3 was first announced several years ago, but never launched. An official launch is in the works; in an application with the CRTC to extend the deadline on creating a new service, a launch date of February 2023 is suggested, though a date as late as August 2023 was applied for.

"Since March of this year, the prior conditions that hindered this initiative have changed drastically," note the application's authors.

After a period of difficulty, CFNR and NNB have rebounded and want to enter the Vancouver market.

"The team here has worked diligently on a new plan which will not just initiate and sustain the project but allow it to foster and grow as well," note the application's authors.

"We have revenue sources that are prepared to invest in this immediately and generously enough to offset our startup and
operating costs."

Connecting communities

Along with music, the goal of CJNY will be to connect those living in Vancouver with communities in the province's north.

"Half the Aboriginal population of Vancouver is from the North. Thus, our new services will enable Aboriginal Northerners, who all too often are displaced economic refugees, to connect with their cherished home communities once again," notes the CJNY website.

There's hope, too, that broadcasting from Vancouver will provide the city with a new cultural connection.

"If we are able to broadcast from Vancouver, the epicenter of Aboriginal life and reconciliation in Canada, its citizens will have a new vital connection to culture, language, and popular roots, blues, and Aboriginal music," explains those behind CJNY online.

CFNR launched in the 1990s and is based in Terrace (rebroadcasting throughout northern BC). In Vancouver it will be picking up where the Aboriginal Voices Radio Network (AVR) left off. AVR used to run CKUR on 106.3 FM, but had its license revoked in 2015. CFNR was awarded that license in 2017 and changed the callsign to CJNY.

"CJNY Vancouver will combine music, storytelling, news and information, and cultural sharing to achieve a rich multicultural entertainment mashup, unlike anything in the Vancouver radio market," states the station's website.