KVLY-TV mast
KVLY-TV mast in 2018
KVLY-TV mast is located in North Dakota
KVLY-TV mast
Location within North Dakota
General information
TypeTV transmission tower (effective radiated power = 316 kW)
LocationBlanchard, Traill County, North Dakota, U.S.
Coordinates47°20′32″N 97°17′21″W / 47.34222°N 97.28917°W / 47.34222; -97.28917
Completed13 August 1963
OwnerGray Television
Height1,987 feet (605.6 m)[1]
Design and construction
Architect(s)Hamilton Directors
Main contractorKline Iron and Steel

The KVLY-TV mast (formerly the KTHI-TV mast) is a television-transmitting mast in Blanchard, North Dakota. It is used by Fargo station KVLY-TV (channel 11) and KXJB-LD's Argusville/Valley City/Mayville translator K28MA-D (channel 28), along with KNGF (channel 27). Completed in 1963, it was once the tallest structure in the world, and stood at 2,063 feet (629 meters) until 2019, when the top mount VHF antenna was removed for the FCC spectrum repack, dropping the height to 1,987 feet (605.6 m).[1]

In 1974, it was succeeded by the Warsaw radio mast as the world's tallest structure. The Warsaw mast collapsed in 1991, again making the KVLY-TV mast the tallest structure in the world until the Burj Khalifa surpassed it in 2008. It became the third tallest when the Tokyo Skytree was completed in 2012, then the fourth tallest when the Shanghai Tower took third place in 2013. It remained the tallest structure in the Western Hemisphere, and the tallest broadcasting mast in the world until the antenna removal in 2019.


KVLY-TV mast compared to the tallest buildings in the world. KXJB-TV has since been renamed KRDK-TV.

The mast is located 3 miles (4.8 km) west of Blanchard, North Dakota, halfway between Fargo and Grand Forks. It became the tallest artificial structure, and the first man-made structure to exceed 2,000 feet (610 m) in height, upon the completion of its construction on August 13, 1963.


The tower was built by Hamilton Erection Company of York, South Carolina, and Kline Iron and Steel, and required thirty days to complete, at a cost of approximately $500,000[2] (roughly $4.98 million today[3]). Construction was completed August 13, 1963.[4]


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Owned by Gray Television of Atlanta, Georgia, the tower broadcasts at 356 kW on channel 36 for television station KVLY-TV (channel 11 PSIP, an NBC/CBS affiliate) which is based in Fargo, North Dakota. The tower provides a broadcast area of roughly 9,700 square miles (25,000 km2), which is a radius of about 55.6 miles (89.5 km). CBS/CW+ affiliate KXJB-LD's translator K28MA-D also broadcasts on this tower at 15 kW on UHF channel 28 (also its virtual channel).

When the mast was built, the call letters of the television station for which it was built were changed to KTHI, the "HI" referring to the height of the mast. The top is reachable by a two-person service elevator (built by Park Manufacturing of Charlotte, North Carolina) or ladder.


The tower consists of two parts: a lattice tower of 1,950 feet (590 m);[5] topped by the transmitting antenna array of 53 feet (16 m). The total height of both is 1,987 feet (606 m). The antenna weighs 9,000 pounds (4.1 t), the lattice tower weighs 855,500 pounds (388.0 t), giving a total weight of 864,500 pounds (392.1 t). It takes up 160 acres (65 ha) of land with its guy anchors.[6][7] Its height above mean sea level is 2,962 feet (903 m).

Federal rule change

Some time after its completion, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) and Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) imposed a policy that states, "Although there is no absolute height limit for antenna towers, both agencies have established a rebuttable presumption against structures over 2,000 feet above ground level." The FCC and FAA may approve a taller structure in "exceptional cases."[8]


Structures of similar height

See also


  1. ^ a b "FCCInfo Structure Registration Results".
  2. ^ Blanchard. "KVLY Tower". Structurae. Retrieved July 17, 2019.
  3. ^ 1634–1699: McCusker, J. J. (1997). How Much Is That in Real Money? A Historical Price Index for Use as a Deflator of Money Values in the Economy of the United States: Addenda et Corrigenda (PDF). American Antiquarian Society. 1700–1799: McCusker, J. J. (1992). How Much Is That in Real Money? A Historical Price Index for Use as a Deflator of Money Values in the Economy of the United States (PDF). American Antiquarian Society. 1800–present: Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis. "Consumer Price Index (estimate) 1800–". Retrieved February 29, 2024.
  4. ^ "ASR Registration 1046244". U.S. Federal Communications Commission.
  5. ^ "N.D. TV Tower No Longer World's Tallest". All Things Considered. NPR.org. 5 January 2010. Retrieved 2011-12-06.
  6. ^ "KVLY-TV Tower". Emporis. Archived from the original on June 4, 2011. Retrieved 2011-12-06.
  7. ^ "Info". Valleynewslive.com. Archived from the original on August 6, 2010.
  8. ^ "Antenna Tower Lighting and Marking Requirements". Federal Communications Commission. 28 June 2016. Retrieved 2018-09-29.
Records Preceded byWIMZ-FM-Tower World's tallest structure 2,063 ft (628.8 m) 1963–1974 Succeeded byWarsaw radio mast Preceded byWarsaw radio mast 1991–2008 Succeeded byBurj Khalifa