Friday, December 13, 2019

First place on the line as Rampage/River Kings prepare for Saturday showdown

Fresh from their debut on national television through last weeks Rogers Hometown Hockey weekend in the city, the Prince Rupert Rampage and Terrace River Kings will once again return to the ice to resume their rivalry, this time in the Skeena Valley city with a Saturday night showdown that could deliver undisputed First Place status for one of the two teams.

Last Saturday, the two teams put their best skate forward as the cameras focused on the long standing rivalry for a feature on the Sunday evening broadcast and to make sure that the home crowd was stoked for the weekend, the Rampage delivered on the scoreboard with an 8-5 victory, pulling the Rhinos even with the River Kings in the CIHL standings.

Tomorrow night, the River Kings will look to reverse their slide and return the favour for the visiting Rampage in front of what should be a motivated home crowd at the Terrace Ice Arena.

Prince Rupert will continue to call on the play making skills of Judd Repole who leads the CIHL in points heading into the weekend, with 19 points, 15 of them helpers for a range of Rampage team mates.

Also looking to keep a hot hand will be Jordan Weir, currently the top goal scorer for the Rhinos with 10 goals, along with 6 assists on the season so far.

Whichever goaltender Coach Roger Atchison decides to go with will be more than ready for the tap on the pads, with both Tomoki Yoshizawa and Kieran Sharpe listed 1-2 in the Goalie Leader listings.

Regardless of who gets the nod, the challenge will be strong, with the River Kings an offensive machine this season, with 69 goals scored so far in nine games.

For those heading to Terrace for game, puck drop is set for 7PM

You can catch up on some of the recent Rampage news through their Facebook page.

For the latest notes on the Rampage and the CHIL see our archive page here.

Prince Rupert RCMP seek assistance of public in Missing persons file

The Prince Rupert RCMP has turned to the community as they continue to seek the whereabouts of a missing Prince Rupert resident, with the Mounties currently working a case file looking for Courtney Nicole Dudoward.

In an information release today, the Prince Rupert detachment noted that Ms. Dudoward, a 29 year old First Nations woman, was last seen at her residence on Raven Place in the evening of December 12th.

She is described as Five foot 2 inches, weighing 120 pounds, Ms. Dudoward has long reddish brown hair. She was last seen wearing a dark coloured sweater with leggings and sweat pants.

Ms. Dudoward's family and the RCMP are concerned for her well-being, as this disappearance is out of the ordinary for her.

Anyone with information on the whereabouts of Courtney Dudoward are urged to contact their local police, Prince Rupert RCMP 250-627-0700 or Crimestoppers at 1-800-222-8477 (TIPS).

For more background on the case file see this item from the Prince Rupert RCMP.

Further notes on the work of Emergency Responders in the Northwest can be found from our archive page.

Port of Prince Rupert expands on plans for Seal Cove redevelopment

The Seal Cove Lagoon area is destined for some remediation
and a makeover as the Port of Prince Rupert looks to
redevelop the area in partnership with the City of Prince Rupert

One of the much promised big announcements from Mayor Lee Brain for last night's Prince Rupert 2030 Vision plan roll out, was a look at some planned re-development of the Seal Cove area of the city's east side, with the Port of Prince Rupert to be the lead developer for a new recreation area in the Seal Cove slough area.

As outlined last night at the Lester Centre, the project will provide for a walking trail around the slough, a new bridge and other recreational elements making it a natural gateway to the Rushbrook Trail.

Today, the Port expanded a bit on those plans, which will be used as part of the Port's plan towards offsetting the impact of the Fairview Connector Road between the container terminal and Ridley Island.

The impact of the Fairview Connector road will be offset by the Port
by way of redevelopment in the Seal Cove area of Price Rupert

The Port noted that through the partnership with the City of Prince Rupert,  they have found a way to leverage its investment in habitat restoration to contribute to community amenities in the vicinity of the Seal Cove Slough.

This habitat compensation project will include the development of new marine riparian areas, intertidal marshes and mudflats, eelgrass beds, and other shoreline planting, and will also serve to enhance visual appeal and feature environmental education components.

It will encompass a lighted pathway around the slough, a pedestrian bridge, benches, tables, and interpretive signage, becoming another community waterfront asset.

Port development is required to mitigate environmental impacts wherever possible and where mitigation is not possible, compensate for habitat loss through habitat creation or restoration projects.

These habitat compensation projects, also known as ‘offsets’, are designed to exceed the productive capacity of the habitat they are replacing or impacting.

PRPA has an obligation to create and restore the marine habitat impacted by the construction of the Fairview-Ridley Connector Corridor and, working with the Department of Fisheries and Oceans, has identified the restoration of the Seal Cove Slough as an ideal project to achieve the habitat enhancement objectives of its compensation program.

Shaun Stevenson, the President and CEO of the Port of Prince Rupert noted how the plan towards environmental sustainability, will work within the Prince Rupert 2030 vision plan.

“Environmental sustainability is a core value of the Prince Rupert Port Authority and this habitat enhancement project will reinvigorate an area impacted by historical industrial use while creating new recreational waterfront access. This project builds upon the direction set by the Prince Rupert 2030 Vision and compliments past PRPA investments in community waterfront access made over the past two decades, including Atlin Terminal, Northland Terminal, Cow Bay Marina, Atlin Promenade and the Rushbrook Trail.”

For the City of Prince Rupert, Mayor Lee Brain observed as to how the project supports the goals of building partnerships and improving the quality of life in the community.

“Seal Cove Slough, located near the Coast Guard and seaplane base on the northeast waterfront, presented a unique opportunity for the Prince Rupert Port Authority and the City of Prince Rupert to work together. The Redesign 2030 Vision has identified opportunities for partnerships to deliver projects that will make a difference to our quality of life and our future growth, and we are excited to see some of those opportunities already starting to take shape through commitments from the Port and others.”

No timelines related to the redevelopment plan were released by the Port, or the city today, with the announcement mostly an overview of the notes from Thursday night.

Further details on the Seal Cove project, as well as review of some of the other habitat compensation projects that the Port has taken on in the region can be explored here.

Mr. Stevenson's presentation at the Lester Centre can be explored further from our notes on the string of announcements from Thursday night here.

For more notes on Port of Prince Rupert initiatives see our Port archive page here.

Federal Mandate letters provide Cabinet Ministers with their marching orders

The Prime Minister outlined for Canadians today what they can expect from the members of the Federal Libera Cabinet, with the Mandate letters for each portfolio released earlier this morning.

The documents, in effect are the marching orders for the Cabinet, listing expectations and providing guidance as they look to deliver on the Federal governments initiatives and programs.

Of note for the North Coast region is the Mandate Letter for Fisheries Minister Bernadette Jordan, which in addition to themes related to the resources of the fishery, also makes note of the importance of relationships with First Nations and dedication towards the Oceans Protection Plan.

As Minister of Fisheries, Oceans and the Canadian Coast Guard, you will lead the Government’s work to protect and promote our three oceans and our waterways, sustain and rebuild the fisheries, and ensure that they remain healthy for future generations, while providing important economic opportunities to Canadians and coastal communities.

Among some of the priorities for Ms. Jordan.

Lead, with the support of the Minister of Transport, the Minister of Innovation, Science and Industry, the Minister of Economic Development and Official Languages and the Minister of Natural Resources, and in consultation with provinces and territories, Indigenous Peoples and business stakeholders, in developing a comprehensive blue economy strategy to help guide future government actions and investments that enable Canada to grow its oceans economy to create good middle class jobs and opportunity for coastal communities while advancing our conservation objectives.

Implement the recently modernized Fisheries Act, which restores lost protections, prioritizes rebuilding fish populations and incorporates modern safeguards so that fish and fish habitats are protected for future generations and Canada’s fisheries can continue to grow the economy and sustain coastal communities. The sustainability of our ocean resources remains paramount.

Work with the Minister of Transport, the Minister of Natural Resources and the Minister of Environment and Climate Change to implement and further develop the Oceans Protection Plan. With the world’s longest coastline, Canada must have a world-leading plan to protect it and marine species at risk. Pursue additional initiatives working with provinces, territories, Indigenous Peoples and all Canadians to better co-manage our three ocean coasts.

Work with the province of British Columbia and Indigenous communities to create a responsible plan to transition from open net-pen salmon farming in coastal British Columbia waters by 2025 and begin work to introduce Canada’s first-ever Aquaculture Act.

Support the Minister of Health who is the Minister responsible for the Canadian Food Inspection Agency in developing a boat-to-plate traceability program to help Canadian fishers to better market their high-quality products.

Use good scientific evidence and traditional Indigenous knowledge when making decisions affecting fish stocks and ecosystem management.

The full mandate letter can be reviewed here.

Other mandate letters of note for the Northwest, and some of their priorities can be reviewed below:

Minister of Crown-Indigenous Relations
Carolyn Bennett

Lead a whole-of-government approach on the continued renewal of a nation-to-nation, Inuit-Crown and government-to-government relationship with Indigenous Peoples, advancing co-developed distinctions-based policy and improving our capacity as a Government to consider and respond to the unique realities of Indigenous Peoples.

Support the Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada in work to introduce co-developed legislation to implement the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples by the end of 2020.

Lead and coordinate the work required of all Ministers to continue to implement the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s Calls to Action.

Lead and coordinate the work required of all Ministers in establishing a National Action Plan in response to the National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls’ Calls for Justice, in partnership with First Nations, Inuit and Métis Peoples.

Minister of Transport
Marc Garneau

Work with the Minister of Infrastructure and Communities to invest in Canada’s trade corridors to increase global market access for Canadian goods

Work with the Minister of Fisheries, Oceans and the Canadian Coast Guard to implement the Oceans Protection Plan to deliver 24/7 emergency response for incident management, to increase on-scene environmental response capacity, and to develop near real-time information on marine traffic with Indigenous and coastal communities.

Work with partners to begin a process to design and introduce programs that support making Canada’s major ports among the most efficient and cleanest in the world.

This work will require you to: Support efforts that develop marine infrastructure and convert ships from burning heavy oil and diesel toward more environmentally friendly fuels, like liquefied natural gas; and Complete the Ports Modernization Review with an aim to update governance structures that promote investment in Canadian ports.

Minister of Natural Resources
Seamus O'Regan

Identify opportunities to support workers and businesses in the natural resource sectors that are seeking to export their goods to global markets. This includes working to construct and complete the twinning of the Trans Mountain Pipeline. This work is anchored in a commitment to protect and create jobs, create economic opportunities for Indigenous communities and use revenues to finance Canada’s clean energy transition.

Support research and provide funding so that municipalities have access to domestic sources of climate-resilient and genetically diverse trees that will increase the resilience of our urban forests.

Work with the Minister of Infrastructure and Communities and the Minister of Indigenous Services to support the transition of Indigenous communities from reliance on diesel-fueled power to clean, renewable and reliable energy by 2030.

Ensure the efficient and effective implementation of the Canadian Energy Regulator Act. Work with the Minister of Crown-Indigenous Relations and the Minister of Finance to develop a new national benefits-sharing framework for major resource projects on Indigenous territory.

Work with the Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness and with the provinces and territories and Indigenous Peoples to complete all flood maps in Canada.

Minister of Infrastructure and Communities
Catherine McKenna

Continue to work with other Members of Parliament to implement the Investing in Canada Plan. Your focus must be on the successful, timely delivery of our growth-generating investments in public transit, green infrastructure and social infrastructure, as well as key strategic infrastructure that will increase trade. The key objectives of this plan are increasing economic growth and creating good middle class jobs with infrastructure that improves people’s quality of life.

Require that all provinces and territories identify and approve all of their long-term infrastructure priorities within the next two years and according to the signed bilateral agreements. Funds that are not designated for specific approved projects by the end of 2021 will be reinvested directly in communities through a top up of the federal Gas Tax Fund.

Create a National Infrastructure Fund to seek out and support major nation-building projects that will benefit people across various regions, connect our country and improve quality of life. This should start by supporting the Newfoundland-Labrador fixed transportation link.

Finalize the creation of an additional infrastructure fund by 2020-2021 to support priority projects and economic diversification for communities transitioning from fossil fuels.

Work with provinces and territories to introduce new funding to help school boards and municipalities purchase 5,000 zero-emission school and transit buses over the next five years.

Ensure that Canadians have access to accurate and timely information about infrastructure investments in their communities, and work with your Cabinet colleagues to improve financial reporting to Canadians and the Parliamentary Budget Officer.

You are the Minister responsible for the arm’s-length Canada Infrastructure Bank, now fully operational. With the support of the Minister of Finance, ensure the Bank has the support it needs for its core purpose of attracting private sector and institutional investment to expand the scope of public infrastructure investment in Canada, in line with the Government’s public policy objectives.

In particular: With the Minister for Women and Gender Equality and Rural Economic Development, and with the support of the Minister of Innovation, Science and Industry and the Minister of Canadian Heritage, work with the Bank to deliver high-speed Internet to 100 per cent of Canadian homes and businesses by 2030.

Work with the Minister of Indigenous Services to co-develop and invest in distinctions-based community infrastructure plans, and move forward with addressing critical needs including housing, all-weather roads, high-speed Internet, health facilities, treatment centres and schools in First Nations, Inuit and Métis communities by 2030. These plans should also include new investments to support the operation and maintenance of this infrastructure.

Work with the Federation of Canadian Municipalities through the Green Municipal Fund, the Municipalities for Climate Innovation Program and the Municipal Asset Management Program to build climate resilience, reduce greenhouse gas emissions, make better decisions, and monitor investments and ensure they reduce emissions from residential, commercial and multi-unit buildings.

 The full list of all mandate letters can be explored here.

The mandate letters are only as good as the mandate that they are designed for and in a minority government situation as there is today, some of those lofty goals and ambitions may never come to pass before a new election call is forced on the government by the opposition.

However, events in Ottawa on Thursday, which saw Conservative leader Andrew Scheer announce his plan to step down as the party's leader, should give the Trudeau Liberal's a bit of breathing time, with the chances of any snap election call now perhaps well off in the distance while the Tories look to select their next leader.

You can review some of the themes of the Federal scene from our political portal, D'Arcy McGee.

Items of note on the work of Skeena-Bulkley Valley MP Taylor Bachrach, and other notes of impact on the Northwest can be found from our archive page here.

Listed as Number One in AA Ball this week, Charles Hays Senior Boys Rainmakers ready for home opener tonight

The CHSS Gymnasium is host for some high school basketball this weekend

After a couple of weeks of road travel for the Senior Boys Rainmakers, Prince Rupert hoops fans will have the opportunity to meet the 2019-20 edition of the Charles Hays squad, as the team hosts a pair of games at the CHSS gymnasium.

The Makers' who came back home from Vancouver's North Shore this week with a second place finish in the No Regrets tourney, will tip off against their long standing Northwest rivals from Terrace tonight in a prime time showdown tonight with the Caledonia Kermodes at 7 PM.

Tonight's matchup is a return engagement from two weeks ago, when the Rainmakers opened their season up with a trip to Terrace

Tomorrow afternoon features a contest with the Nass Valley's Nisga'a Secondary Boys who are in town for a 1:30 tip off.

The Senior Boy's Rainmakers head into the weekend with Top Dog status in AA High School Ball in British Columbia, their success against some of the top talent in the Vancouver area moving them up one spot in the weekly rankings, as relayed through the Varsity Letters website and BC Hoop Scoop.

The Junior Boys team is in Prince George this week, taking part in their annual visit to the Prince George Polars tournament

That event carries on through the weekend, with Kevin Sawka's team looking to serve notice that they are a force to be reckoned with this season on the road to provincials.

For more notes on Rainmaker sports see our archive page here.

Prince Rupert 2030 Vison plan archive

A collection of notes on the coverage of the December 12th presentation of the Prince Rupert 2030 Vision plan at the Lester Centre of the Arts.

North Coast Review items

December 13 -- Port of Prince Rupert expands on plans for Seal Cove redevelopment 
December 13 -- Collaboration the focus for Rupert 2030 Announcements, setting the template for the future as program of civic renewal moves forward
December 13 -- Many Moving parts and many questions to come for Prince Rupert 2030 Vision plan
December 12 -- The future is the feature ... A City of Prince Rupert and partners prepare to present Prince Rupert 2030 vision tonight at the Lester Centre

Remainder of North Coast media

December 13 -- Prince Rupert City Vision 2030 (video)
December 13 -- Big Plans ahead: Prince Rupert Reveals 2030 vision
December 13 -- A new vision unveiled for Prince Rupert
December 13 -- City of Prince Rupert and community partners share joint announcements
December 13 -- Prince Rupert Port Authority announces Seal Cove restoration project
December 13 -- Prince Rupert residents get first glimpse of redesign plan for the city (audio)

Archive video of the Thursday presentation

More notes on the Prince Rupert 2030 vision plan and other initiatives from redesign rupert can be explored through our archive page here.

Collaboration the focus for Prince Rupert 2030 Announcements, setting the template for the future as program of civic renewal moves forward

Mayor Lee Brain preparing to roll out a number of announcements'
from the  Prince Rupert 2030 vision presentation

A string of announcements as part of Thursday's Prince Rupert 2030 vision plan presentation, served to put into visual context the goal of increased collaboration in the region that made for the over-ridging theme of the night.

That as Mayor Lee Brain introduced four initiatives that worked in some concert with the wider vision presented on the night. Complete with signing ceremonies, the Mayor spoke to the new spirit that he hopes to bring to the community as he welcomed each of the stakeholders to the stage to outline the joint announcements.

"We are looking at nothing short of a full scale mobilization of this community, to accomplish something of that magnitude is going to require all hands on deck ...  Tonight we wanted to be able to showcase to you some of those plans and show you that this is reality, because we're all from Prince Rupert and we all know the saying of "I'll believe when I see it" ... But tonight its time to believe it, it's time to walk out of here tonight updating our minds that this town is moving forward, it's time to change the narrative of the negative self talk into a positive can-do attitude it's time to really band together to make this happen, cause we're going to make it happen and tonight you're going to see it happen"-- Mayor Lee Brain on the path ahead for Prince Rupert 2030

Towards delivering on the vision, the Mayor outlined his first announcement of the evening, noting how the City and stakeholder partners had hired on some  experts, as well as to create a Vision Stewardship Council,  a co-governing body which will work on terms of reference, how the funds will be established and all the working elements of the program, with plans to have the First Nations involved in the process as it evolves.

While outlining the scope of duties that will be taken on early in January of 2020, the mayor did not provide any indication as to the salary or funding cost for City Council and city residents, nor did he share how those costs will be shared as part of the new plan ahead.

As well the Mayor observed that starting in January the city and stakeholders would be launching its process to update the Official Community plan , bringing in additional expertise, high level folks as he described them,  to work towards development of the new OCP. With the mayor noting how there would workshops and community engagements to lay the foundation to make the program a reality and how 2020 would be a very active time as they work toward revising the community plan to integrate the Prince Rupert 2030 Vision elements.

Among the four major announcements on the evening, two were a review of previously announced projects and two were new initiatives of items that had been on the city's wish list from years past:

Seal Cove Redevelopment

Shaun Stevenson, the President and CEO of the Port of Prince Rupert provided for the overview of an ambitious redevelopment of Seal Cove, that as part of an environmental offest program related to the work taking place on the Fairview Terminal connector road to Ridley Island.

From the Seal Cove redevelopment, a new recreation space will be created, with lighted walkways around the lagoon in the area, pedestrian bridge benches and tables all creating a gateway to the Rushbrook Trail.

No timeline was provided as to when the project will get underway, or when its completion is anticipated.  

Lax Kw'alaams Housing Announcement

The second presentation, provided for an update on a housing announcement from last year in Lax Kw'alaams with Harvey Campbell making note that following an agreement on funding for housing with the province of British Columbia, that plans are in motion to development of sixty units of subsidized and affordable rental housing in the City of Prince Rupert.  

There wasn't much in the way of detail towards the project which will go somewhere along 11th Avenue, with Lax Kw'alaams set to introduce the proposal once the final design planning is complete.

Acquisition of Lot 9 in the Cow Bay area

City Manager Bob Long outlined the scope of an acquisition of land from CN that runs from the end of Third Avenue East past Rona and on towards the Rushbrook Area.  The area known as Lot 9 will allow for further development in what would be known as the Marina District.

Noting how he believes that CN had seen the light and how the city has built a better relationship with the national railway with the potential for other projects for access of property for community use.

The City Manager however did not disclose too many details in relation to the acquisition which was made through the City's Legacy Inc program.

Rupert's Landing

Calling representatives from the Kitkatla Nation to the stage, as well as members of City Council the Mayor outlined a program that is part of a desire for reconciliation, with the introduction of the redevelopment of the Waterfront Park area, which will be recreated as Rupert Landing.

That thirty million dollar project, which was first proposed in the winter of 2016, will feature a new marina, a relocation of the airport Ferry and dock space for the Kitkatla ferry as well as redevelopment of the immediate area of existing buildings and features.

The Mayor also noted that the city had just signed a new relationship protocol with Kitkatla, similar those signed with Lax Kw'alaams and Metlakatla this summer, adding that the City Council will be working closer with First Nations to push these projects through.

Kitkatla Chief Councillor Linda Innes spoke to the shared partnership that the project offers and how it provides for a confirmation as to how communities working together can achieve great things.

"The Rupert's Landing project is a milestone achievement that will transform Prince Rupert's waterfront, into a community space that supports retail, tourism and transportation for Prince Rupert, Kitkatla and all communities in the Northwest region"

There was no detailed explanation provided on the night, to outline how the 30 million dollar cost of the redevelopment will be shared by the partners. Though earlier this year, the City did seek out grant funding from both Federal and provincial sources towards the infrastructure project.

The Mayor also hinted at some other potential announcements to come, noting that he had one other announcement planned for the night but had to pull it back for now owing to some still to be resolved details.

He also put forward the prospect of more similar style announcements, some Downton incubation programs that he hopes to share in the months ahead in 2020.

While the evening was one of talk of partnerships, one partner it seemed was left out of the equation for the big show. 

Considering how some of the announcements of Thursday involve provincial funding for housing or infrastructure, it was somewhat unusual that the area's MLA Jennifer Rice was not part of the presentation on the night. 

An oversight that left out any indication as to the level of provincial participation that may be required, or requested as part of the goals for development of the program over the next ten years.

The presentations of each announcement can be viewed below, the roll out of each initiative starts at the one hour and ten minute mark.

You can review our notes on the Prince Rupert 2030 presentation here.

Further notes as the projects evolve could soon be found through the redesign rupert website.

An archive of all the media coverage can be explored here.

For items of interest on the redesign program see our archive page here, further notes from City Council can be found through our Council Discussion archive.

(All images above were taken from the CityWest streamcast of Thursday's presentation)

Many Moving parts and many questions to come for Prince Rupert 2030 vision plan

The blue prints were indeed impressive as promised; but whether the house of Prince Rupert will look anything like the drawings presented  will be for the next ten years to tell!

Thursday night the audience at the Lester Centre and those viewing at home on CityWest were part of a Master's Class in urban planning, as Prince Rupert became the test subject for some expansive themes in city space creating.

Urban planner Larry Beasley, of Beasley and Associates provided for the tutorial of reinvention for the city, showcasing the many, very unique elements that will fit into the overall scope of change that will certainly make the city look very different by 2030, than it looks today as we head towards 2020.

Following a greeting of welcome from Alex Campbell, the evening began with Mayor Lee Brain speaking to the opportunity for a new beginning, offering another reminder to his frequent narrative as to how as a community we have turned a corner and are now moving forward.

"So, tonight is about what happens when a community comes together as a team and what it looks like when collaboration joins and we are able to create a plan and results for our community that has been sitting in a place for twenty years that's been asking for a new beginning. And there have been many attempts to really kick start this community and really get it going. And I think by the end of the night tonight, it's going to be very clear to this community that we're turning a corner and moving forward" -- Prince Rupert Mayor Lee Bran introducing Prince Rupert 2030

Mr. Brain then provided for what would be the ongoing current of the evening, an emphasis on how partnerships and collaboration will be the often heard words for the next ten years, with the community required to come on board as active participants as the City and a range of stakeholder put the vision plan into motion.

That theme of collaboration and working together was reinforced by the city's partners and stakeholers in the initiative, with themes on the work of redesign rupert noted towards the common goal.

One after another came presentations from John Farrell of Community Futures of the Northwest, Shaun Stevenson from the Port of Prince Rupert, Johnathon Hebert from RayMont Terminals and Angela Kirkum representing DP World, with the Mayor delivering a statement of similar themes from Ridley Terminals.

As Mr. Beasley took take the stage the full scope of what could be ahead began, a report 90 pages in length broken down element by element over the course of forty minutes or so, the project that was one year in the making was one of the fastest start ups that Beasley and his team have ever done.

He outlined how the vision plan would offer a fresh way to look at this community, reconcile differences and offer a different way to achieve the results they are looking to bring to Prince Rupert.

"The communities and Port of Prince Rupert will grow in sync, through pervasive collaboration and reconciliation, with the communities hosting complete living and supports for the port and the port embracing the complete living and supports of the communities" -- Larry Beasley offering up the vision statement for Prince Rupert 2030

Towards delivering on that vision, Mr. Beasley outlined the key principles that will guide the process over the next ten years.

When it comes to the roadmap ahead, it will certainly make for a significant change as to what we find today, with unique districts created, consolidation in the downtown core and more use of the waterfront among some of the themes.

Among the areas that could be marked on a guide map by 2030 are a Marina District, a Lower Town and Upper Town, a Midtown and Knowledge and Innovation  Hub areas.

The current downtown core, or Upper Town as it has been reimagined, would be one of the centre pieces for the change that is anticipated. It will become a bustling urban space with new office spaces, with a strong suggestion that the Port take up residence in that newly invigorated space, serving as an energy force to bring change to the core of the city.

As well as the creation of more offices, a mix of retail and residential which would serve to redefine the historical area of the downtown, with Mr. Beasley observing how Councillor Niesh noted that the focus on Upper Town should be the first priority for the plan ahead.

Beasley also noted how the Upper Town area would be a place for First Nations of the region to bring their concepts and create service centres for the community and to interpret their culture to both residents and visitors alike.

For the waterfront, a new park in the Marina District, a Sunset Beach, expanded Cruise Dock capacity, a relocation of the Airport Ferry to where the Rotary Waterfront park is now as well as the development of a second marina in that location.

The future for housing also made for a significant portion of the vision plan, part of the eight building blocks for action, among the priorities to create a dedicated agency to kick-start the housing market, fill market gaps in housing in the community.

Workforce issues and workplace development, as well as rebuilding the retail core to the city also made for themes of note on the night.

A review as to how to put the plan in motion over the next ten years provided a look towards the requirement of extensive placemaking and review of the Social infrastructure in the community.

Included in those themes, the creation of pocket parks, trails and other elements that will assist  in making the city a liveable space for residents.

Community Infrastructure, Governance and environmental and wilderness desires brought the overview to conclusion, with Mr. Beasley noting of the desire to protect and access the wilderness areas as part of the evolution of the vision plan towards 2030. 

Should all of the elements come to arrive as previewed on Thursday evening, the transformation of the city and region will be much more than just redevelopment of actual land in the area, it will create a revitalized and re-energized community in ten years time.

As Mr. Beasley brought his presentation to a close he provided for a synopsis of the road ahead and how the plan will require the participation of many more people that were in the room on the evening and how there will be a need to bring in all of the residents of the region, the industrial partners and First Nation communities together towards it.

He also observed as to how the plan will morph over time, and how it will become better and more resilient as the community moves through the processes that had been introduced on the evening.

"This is your vision for the future of Prince Rupert, for its transformation to achieve something very different in this community over the next decade, as compared to what you faced over the last several decades. And as we hand this over to you, we said let that process begin, let it begin with joy, let it begin with ideas, let it begin with positive thinking but let it begin. Let the game plan that we have given you step by step, day by day in the next decade come to be the true Prince Rupert of the future" -- Urban Planner Larry Beasley setting the Prince Rupert 2030 Vision plan in motion for the community on Thursday evening

The overview was somewhat overwhelming to try and digest in the scope of a one hour presentation and fortunately, through CityWest's community information streams, we can review the blue print online with the streamcast of the presentation available for review. 

That offers a chance to focus on each of the elements and what is planned and how each of the moving parts will work in sync to create the city that has been envisioned by 2030.

The replay of the Prince Rupert 2030 presentation can be explored below: 

The entire download of the Prince Rupert 2030 vision plan can be accessed here, from the redesign rupert website.

The glimpse into the future that could be in place in ten years time that came from Thursday's presentation was very much that of dreaming the dream; with a little less focus on expanding as to how the stakeholders will work towards the goals, or how the overall reach of it will be financed.

That process, much like the vision plan itself we imagine, will continue to evolve as the city and its new partners in civic development begin to work towards implementing the project.

The Vision plan as things turned out was just one element of the hour and half evening of information, with Prince Rupert Mayor Lee Brain then making for a string of announcements related to some projects that will soon be developed, as part of the new dedication towards collaboration.

An archive of all the media coverage can be explored here.

For more items of note related to the redesign rupert program see our archive page here.

For a wider overview of City Council Discussion themes see our Council archive here.

(All images above were taken from the CityWest streamcast of Thursday's presentation)

Thursday, December 12, 2019

The future is the feature ... As City of Prince Rupert and partners prepare to present PrinceRupert 2030 vision tonight at the Lester Centre

"Tonight is about this entire community, its future and its people" -- Mayor Lee Brain hailing the work towards the Prince Rupert 2030 vision which will be revealed tonight at the Lester Centre

It's almost showtime for the City of Prince Rupert and range of industrial and community partners, with the Lester Centre set to be the host and stage for redesign rupert as they  introduce the roll out of the Prince Rupert 2030 vision plan, with Mayor Lee Brain and a number of other speakers set to chart the community's course for the next ten years.

The project has been a summer long initiative for City Council and number of stakeholders led by the Port of Prince Rupert, DP World,  Ridley Terminals, Raymont Logistics and Community Futures of the Public Northwest.

Their efforts featured engagement sessions with local organizations and individuals, workshop sessions and other meetings with community stakeholders to better understand the challenges of the community and look to chart the future for the decade ahead.

As we outlined on Monday, the strategies from all of that engagement will be used to address a number of themes in Prince Rupert, such as housing, social infrastructure, urban design, parks and recreation, downtown revitalization and workforce retention to name a few of the themes.

The stakeholders brought in one of the highest regarded of city planners in Canada, with Larry Beasley, principle of Beasley and Associates providing for his input and research, with Mr. Beasley to be on hand to share the results of the last three to four months of work on the project.

Mayor Brain took his social media page earlier this morning with some thanks for the work of the stakeholders and to once again invite the public to take in the evening's information session.

The event starts at 7 PM at the Lester Centre of the Arts, and for those who cannot attend the event, it will be streamed live courtesy of CityWest.

The Prince Rupert based communication company will feature the Lester Centre presentation on Cable Channels 10 & HD310, on their Facebook page, as well as on its streaming page on the CityWest website.

For some of our previous notes on the planning process that led up to this evening's big reveal see our redesign rupert archive, as well as our notes from our Council Discussion page.

City of Prince Rupert to dedicate $850,000 towards Paving plans for 2020

2020 could see more road closures as the city prepares
to tackle a number of paving projects for the year ahead

Residents of Prince Rupert may find some of the trouble spots on their personal list of city streets get some long overdue attention in 2020, that as the City of Prince Rupert outlined an increase towards road remediation for the year ahead.

The paving promise coming as part of Monday's city council session which found the City's Financial Officer Corrine Bomben making note of 850,000 dollars in civic spending ahead to address some of the road concerns, which will be an increase of 350,000 from the level allocated for 2019.

The spending will come as part of the larger Capital project overview of Monday, which provided for the blue print ahead for a number of major initiatives in 2020, as well as an outline as to how the city hopes to fund the majority of them, with a hope that they won't have to go to the taxpayer for any debt requirements that many come along.

Councillor Barry Cunningham was inquiring on paving plans for the year
ahead as part of Monday's Council Session

As for the paving theme, Ms. Bomben's notes found approval from Councillor Barry Cunningham, who would like to see even more money allocated if the city could find grants or other funding towards remediation on the city's streets.

 'With the paving increase, I know that the Federal government has been talking a lot about infrastructure grants and that. Our road infrastructure is very poor right now, and I'm wondering if there's any grants going to be available to increase, double, triple, quadruple our paving contribution" -- Councillor Barry Cunningham on funding for road projects in the city

Mr. Cunningham's dreams of grant funding would however be dashed by Ms. Bomben who noted that at the moment there are no funding instruments available for such a program.

What may be instructive for the city's residents in the New Year, would be for council to review the paving program from this past year, which had allocated one million dollars following receipt of some additional Federal Gas Tax money towards the road.

However seemingly the most of it was gobbled up this summer by some major work done on George Hills, Way, McBride Street, the Digby Island Airport road and on Wantage Road leading to the city public works yard.

The paving program for 2019 appearing to have left number of roads in the city still making for somewhat of an off road challenge for motorists, who may have just abandoned any thoughts of ever getting a wheel alignment ever again.

Council might wish to take some time in a public session to invite the City Manager to review the results of the paving plan from 20119 and perhaps offer up an idea as to where the city plans to address their attention for the year ahead.

For more notes on Monday's Council session see our Council Timeline Feature here, while the discussion of the theme of the roads can be viewed from the City's Video Archive starting at the 24 minute mark.

For some background on the city's infrastructure challenges, see our archive page here.

A wider overview of Council Discussion themes can be found from our Council Discussion archive here.

City Council to hold Special Council session tonight at 5:30

A notice went up on the City of Prince Rupert website on Tuesday calling attention to two Special Council sessions set to take place tonight at City Hall starting at 5:00PM

The First a Special Regular Council session, though the City's Agenda page offers up no outline as to what topics the Council members may be addressing in their gathering tonight.

A best guess might suggest that it is to deal with some of the motions put forward on Monday evening; particularly towards moving forward with the some of the financial notes and fee changes outlined as part of the last regularly scheduled Council session of the year from Monday.

As well, Council has called another Closed Council Session for 2019 (eighteen of them prior to this evening) this one seemingly to follow the Special Council session, with Council citing a section of the Community Charter as the reason to go behind the closed doors.

90.1 (e) the acquisition, disposition or expropriation of land or improvements, if the council considers that disclosure could reasonably be expected to harm the interests of the municipality.

Regardless of the themes, don't expect it to be a lengthy discussion, tonight is the night of the highly promoted Prince Rupert 2030 vision unveiling, so one imagines that the Mayor and Council members will want to be at the Lester Centre in plenty of time for the 7PM presentation.

For more notes on Council Discussion themes see our archive page here.

City of Prince Rupert releases preliminary findings from Child Care study

The City of Prince Rupert has provided a sneak peek at what will be a larger report to be delivered in 2020 that examines the state of Child Care in the community and where the City looks to go towards an Action plan for the years ahead.

The preliminary look provides a snapshot of some of the findings from the recent Child Care Survey conducted by the City which asked a range of questions to determine the state of child care in the community and to hear what residents are looking for towards the future.

The process began in August with a survey period taking place over two months through the Rupert Talks platform, with paper copies of the survey available at a number of locations around the city.

With the initial indications providing for a few areas for the City to take note of prior to the release of the full report, among some of those notes that were highlighted in yesterday's introduction to the preliminary notes:

That there are limited licensed care options outside of traditional work hours to accommodate shift workers; there is a lack of a centralized registry of available licensed spaces; and although child care costs were identified as a challenge, there is low awareness of current child care benefit eligibility to reduce costs. The study also noted space shortages for infants and toddlers, especially, as well as inability to recruit/retain child care staff as a major barrier to service provision.

The project was launched with the assistance of 25,000 dollars in grant funding from the Union of British Columbia Municipalities.

When it comes to the data review offered up, the city highlighted notes on the lack of daycare outside of traditional hours, the shortage of spaces available in the community and the issues of retaining staff in the community to deliver those services, as some of the key take aways.

The community engagement process to date on the themes of Child Care has seen submissions through 15 one on one interviews, 71 Child drawing submissions, 132 parent surveys and 10 Child Care provider surveys.

When it comes to what is expected of the city when it comes to Child care, respondents noted that the City Should become a community champion and leader for child care needs as well as to provide child care space in a civic facility.

Among some of the themes on Child care that the city should explore were: 

Build community awareness by communicating where parents can go to access child care. 

Inventory and assess the empty buildings in the community for suitability for new spaces. 

Review zoning regulations to encourage child care in all areas of the city and work on bylaws to encourage child care space creation

Consider policy development that promotes space creation for child care needs that reflects the unique people, community and cultures in Prince Rupert

Use City-owned buildings to, directly and indirectly, create space for child care and programs

Review bus service and routes for ease of access to child care spaces

Partner organizations such as Coast Mountain College to advocate for ECE programming

Look at our streets and neighbourhood safety, particularly where child cares spaces exist.

The findings of the preliminary report can be reviewed here.

As part of the community engagement, some prizes were awarded to a pair of participants in the survey process.

With the City offering Congratulations to  Sara White, a local parent who won the survey prize draw for a $500 RESP for her child, generously donated by Northern Savings Credit Union. 

Participant Alicia McDowall also won a one-month Recreation pass to the facility for herself and her family. 

The information taken from the survey will help towards the creation of the Draft Plan which is anticipated to be delivered for public review in February of 2020.

The city notes that the plan will be a valuable resource for the City, child care operators, employers and community partners to use to proactively address and advocate for local child care needs. 

In addition the city observes as to how it will be a key document to assist local applications for the recently announced Childcare BC New Spaces Fund, where Prince Rupert is eligible for up to $3 million in space creation funding. 

For more items of interest from City Hall see our Council Discussion archive.