Voices Out Of The Fog

HELP CHRS & THE BAY AREA RADIO MUSEUM SAVE ITS HOME!

KGO Radio, Oakland
Studio Building, 1924

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General Electric built a grand studio building for its station KGO in 1924. The station was located on the grounds of a G.E. transformer factory at 5441 East 14th Street (now International Blvd.) in Oakland. The studio building was a two-story brick structure. On the first floor, near the entrance, was the office of the program manager, and the correspondence room. Opposite these was the reception room where visitors were welcomed.

In the rear was a room containing the storage batteries as well as one containing the battery charging generators and plate supply generators for the amplifiers in the control room. The storage batteries and plate supply generators were in duplicate, assuring uninterrupted service.

After NBC purchased KGO and moved the studio operations to San Francisco, this building was renovated into office space for the factory, which continued to use it for many years, and the building was always referred to as “The Studio Building.”

After the closure of the transformer factory in 1975, the 24-acre site was found to be contaminated by PCBs used during the manufacturing process. The process of removing the contamination, which began in 1979, was scheduled for completion in early 2008 by California’s Department of Toxic Substances Control.

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