KNX, the only news radio station in Los Angeles, will be available on the FM band from today.

Audacy, the Philadelphia-based audio company and owner of KNX, announced Monday that it will simultaneously broadcast the station’s signal to 97.1 FM. KNX will continue to be broadcast on 1070, its AM frequency since 1941.

Simultaneous broadcast will replace Audacy’s contemporary hit radio format on KNOU-FM, also known as “97.1 NOW!” All KNOU staff, including their on-air talents, will be retained to work at other Audacy outlets, the company’s regional president Jeff Federman told The Times.

The addition of an FM signal for KNX is an attempt to get younger listeners to sample the station as they gravitate towards more spoken word audio programs in both radio and podcasting.

A recent report from Edison Research shows that the audience for spoken word content has grown by 22 million people over the past seven years, up 40% during that time. Growth among listeners aged 13 to 34 is 113% over this period and 18% in the last year alone.

KNX has been one of the primary sources of information, weather and traffic in Southern California since its inception in 1921 as KGC. But young listeners began to shy away from AM radio in the 1970s, as the use of FM radios increased and the superior fidelity of FM signals made it the preferred medium for music programming.

As a result, generations of listeners have probably never even heard of KNX due to its stance on the AM band.

“We think simulcasting on FM is really going to open up the station and the KNX brand to a whole new audience who frankly might not know we exist on the AM dial,” Federman said.

Audacy previously added FM simulcasts for its news radio stations AM in San Francisco, KCBS-AM (740) and Chicago, WBBM-AM (780). The two outlets rank in the top three stations in their market, according to Nielsen data.

KNX averaged 2.9% of Los Angeles radio audience share in November, ranking 10th overall.

Adding an FM signal for KNX will also remove another obstacle for AM listening. Motors in electric vehicles can interfere with the reception of AM signals. This has led some electric car makers to stop including the AM band on their radios.

“As we think about the next 100 years, we want to be where the people are,” Federman said. “Being on FM guarantees that we won’t have these kinds of problems. “

Having an FM channel also means Los Angeles drivers won’t lose the station in areas where topography may decrease an AM signal.

In addition to KNX, Audacy owns the classic hit station KRTH-FM (101.1), the rhythm hit station KTWV-FM (94.7), the adult hit station KCBS-FM (93.1) and KROQ-FM (106.7), which has an alternative rock format. . The stations were broadcasting from the studios of the Miracle Mile.

Audacy has owned KNX since 2017, when it merged with the radio division of CBS Corp. The company was known as Entercom at the time of the transaction.