TVI is a Fox-affiliated television station located in St. Louis, Missouri, United States. It first aired in 1953. KTVI’s transmitter is located in the unincorporated community of Sappington.
KTVI, virtual channel 2 (UHF digital channel 33), is a Fox-affiliated television station licensed to St. Louis, Missouri, United States. The station is owned by Nexstar Media Group, as part of a duopoly with CW affiliate KPLR-TV (channel 11). The two stations share studios on Ball Drive in the northwestern St. Louis County suburb of Maryland Heights (though with a St. Louis city postal address); KTVI’s transmitter is located in the unincorporated community of Sappington. On cable, the station is available on Charter Spectrum channel 2 in both standard and high definition, and on AT&T U-verse channels 2 (SD) and 1002 (HD).
News department history
As an ABC affiliate, KTVI’s newscasts usually placed third in the ratings, behind longtime leader KSDK (channel 5) and KMOV. However, for most of the 1980s and early 1990s, the station fought a spirited battle with KMOX-TV/KMOV for second place. Since 2009, the station’s weekday morning newscast has placed first among the newscasts in the St. Louis market during that time period. One of the mainstay evening segments is “You Paid For It” (an investigative segment reported by Elliott Davis that uncovers city government tax abuse; the segment ends by giving the phone number of the office of that municipality’s mayor, followed by the signoff “Call and speak your mind: after all, you paid for it”).
After joining Fox in August 1995, KTVI increased its news programming output from roughly 30 hours a week to nearly 45 hours. It initially retained a news schedule similar to what it had as an ABC affiliate. All of its existing newscasts were retained, but it expanded its weekday morning newscast from one to three hours (with two hours added from 7:00 to 9:00 a.m.), and bridged the weeknight 5:00 and 6:00 p.m. newscasts into a 90-minute early evening news block (by adding a half-hour newscast at 5:30 to compensate for Fox’s lack of a national news program). However, like its Austin sister station KTBC did during its first four years as a Fox station, KTVI did not initially add a prime time newscast at 9:00 p.m. upon switching to the network to compensate for Fox’s lack of prime time network programming during that hour; instead, it filled the slot with syndicated programming from the August 1995 switch until September 1996, when it debuted a half-hour 9:00 p.m. newscast; it continued to air syndicated shows during the 9:30 half-hour until the prime time newscast expanded to one hour in September 1999, now leading directly into the 10:00 p.m. newscast (KTVI is one of several Fox stations that offer newscasts in both the final hour of primetime and the traditional late news timeslot, one of the few affiliated with the network that runs a nightly 10:00 p.m. (or 11:00 p.m.) newscast and one of the few to continue its Big Three-era 10:00 p.m. newscast after switching to Fox).
In addition to compensating for the absence of daily national newscasts on Fox’s schedule, the expansion of KTVI’s news schedule also served to fill timeslots vacated by the departures of Good Morning America and World News Tonight through its discontinuance of the ABC affiliation. KTVI is able to emphasize a broad array of stories from national and local reports, to investigative stories because of its large news programming output. The station also devotes a sizeable portion of its sports coverage to local high school sports (once partnering with the St. Louis Post-Dispatch to produce the now-canceled Prep Sports Show on Saturdays) and was the home of Jeff Fisher’s weekly St. Louis Rams review show on Mondays.
For much of the time since it affiliated with Fox until the LMA began, KTVI’s 9:00 p.m. newscast had beaten KPLR-TV’s own prime time news program in that timeslot. Before Dick Ford retired from the station in December 2005, all four of KTVI’s main male anchors (Ford, Tom O’Neal, Dan Gray and John Pertzborn) formerly served as anchors at KSDK. On April 10, 2006, KTVI debuted a new standardized graphics package, logo and news theme (Fox Affiliate News Theme by OSI Music) that was used by Fox’s other owned-and-operated stations and select affiliates, during that evening’s 9:00 p.m. newscast. A new set and weather center (replacing one built in 1998) was also introduced (the old news desk was donated to Southern Illinois University Carbondale, with the old weather center donated to the University of Missouri–St. Louis). In December 2008, KPLR temporarily relocated its newscasts to KTVI’s now-former Clayton-Tamm/Dogtown studios as KPLR’s facility was being remodeled to accommodate both KPLR and KTVI’s newscasts; KTVI moved production of its newscasts to a temporary set in January 2009, in order for crews dismantle and move the station’s existing news set to KPLR’s Maryland Heights facility.
On February 15, 2009, KTVI began broadcasting local newscasts in high definition from its new Maryland Heights studio, accompanied by a new graphics package. The set was updated with several elements added to better fit the new graphics and due to the conversion to HD, while removing the city skyline backdrop in favor of a blue background. In January 2010, KTVI expanded its weekday morning newscast to six hours from 4:00 to 10:00 a.m. (despite the expansion, the station retained its 11:00 a.m. newscast). On December 23, 2011, KTVI/KPLR opened a news bureau in the newly renovated Peabody Opera House in downtown St. Louis, to better serve the downtown and eastern portion of the St. Louis metropolitan area.
On January 28, 2015, KTVI/KPLR introduced a new combined set with LED lighting, two video walls (one replacing the weather green screen), and a new anchor desk. Both stations now share the set (but KPLR uses a separate Weather center). They also introduced new graphics and music package for both stations the same day. KTVI became the first station in the Central time zone to launch an 11:00 pm weeknight newscast Hosted by Shirley Washington and Jasmine Huda (formerly of KMOV) the show debuted on January 18, 2016. In 2020, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, KTVI/KPLR had started “The Power of Two”, where they would help spread facts of COVID-19, so people can be safe and aware of the pandemic.