Weather Channel getting facelift

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— AT&T Cable Services and the Weather Channel are working on a significant upgrade to the local weather channel 17 in Steamboat Springs and Walden -- an upgrade that should more accurately depict what's happening with mother nature.

"The current version is a blue screen with white... type and sometimes doesn't have the most current local information," said Debbie Curd, general manager for AT&T Media Services in Steamboat. "The new version will have weather graphics, lots more colors, sharper images and better local reporting levels. The cosmetic look will be different, much more like a news forecast, but the accuracy of the reporting will be greatly improved as well."

Curd said she has been working on the improved local weather channel for about two years.

"We currently have the oldest version of the technology for the channel and the new system is the highest technology available," she said. "The Weather Channel agreed with us that our lives are dependent on accurate weather reporting. We live in a premier resort community, we want to put the best information out there for our customers."

Once the new channel is up, viewers should find higher accuracy weather information and also will be greeted by a meteorologist who will read the news, Curd said.

The cost of the upgrade is approximately $11,000 -- a fee that will be shared between Walden and Steamboat.

"Technology is expensive but if you think about $5,500 for what we'll be getting, it's worth it for better service," Curd said. "Weather is so important to all of us in these resort towns. We have been interested in this type of package for some time and when it became available, we rushed it to the top of our priority list."

Although AT&T officials originally though it would take three months to get the new system up and running, Curd said the equipment arrived this week and she expects it will take less time than originally thought.

"I'm really excited about this and I think our customers will appreciate the high quality of service we'll be bringing them," Curd said.



-- To reach Bryna Larsen call 871-4205 or e-mail blarsen@amigo.net

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