Thursday, January 26, 2023

One Month on from Local State of Emergency ending, Few updates provided on state of waterline work or reception to recent letter writing campaigns

Work has continued through January on the water line issues related
to the Crestview area of the city

It's just over one month now that the City Council announced the end of the Local State of Emergency related to the December freeze and subsequent waterline breaks, a period of one week prior to Christmas which seemingly had the community close to a complete water infrastructure failure.

The last official statement on the Local State of Emergency was issued on December 24th just before the holiday period began, the statement noting that the emergency of the previous seven days was now under control.

The Final word on the Local State of Emergency from December
was issued on December 24

The short update just prior to Christmas, was a bit of a relief from the previous themes that had been recounted during the week that had passed previous. 

Though one month later there is still much work underway in two of the larger areas of note.

That of the original break on Crestview Drive that first raised the alarms of December and a second work site that is still going strong at First Avenue just east of Pacific Mariners Park located in front of Broadwater Industries.

Neither seems close to finish and the roads remain closed to motorists in those areas.

Through traffic access remains closed for the Crestview Area

Since the Declaration and then Ending of the State of Local Emergency there have been two Public  City Council Sessions that have taken place. 

One on January 9th, the other this past Monday and at both of those sessions, which would have offered a chance for a full overview of where we are when it comes to the water issues, none was provided.

Nor did anyone on City Council think to ask a few questions of the Operations Director Richard Pucci, who was in attendance for both sessions.

So as the work continues, city residents have no idea how much may be left to complete, or how much it has cost so far, how much it may cost moving forward and how the city has decided to budget the work on the water issues.

As well, with the city's water situation now one of much interest for a range of politicians, provincial and Federal,  there was no discussion as to whether all of the letter writing of the last month has delivered any kind of response from the Federal Government. 

Offering some hope of success  towards the request for some immediate assistance towards the city's infrastructure woes.

In just the last month, Dominic LeBlanc, the Federal Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs, Infrastructure and Communities and Omar Alghabra, the Minister of Transport, have received letters in support of Prince Rupert's call for help from the following:

With the last of the January public sessions for Council now past, the City Council members missed a good opportunity to provide some background on those efforts and what they may have heard back, if anything, from the various calls of support. 

Also missing from the update file as we move towards February, is an indication if the City has finally shifted from its water supply from Shawatlan Lake, back to the Woodworth Dam supply.

At the January 9th Session of Council, Operations Director Richard Pucci advised that the city was awaiting notice from Northern Health that would allow it to draw from the Woodworth Dam supply, so far there has been no official announcement  released to advise residents that the shift has taken place.

If indeed we are still on the Shawatlan Lake supply, there needs to be some kind of an update as to why the delay continues and when will it be resolved.

Something that will give the Dam a purpose for more than just photo backdrops.

North Coast MLA Jennifer Rice recently shared a note through her Social Media stream  of a lunch session that she and Mayor Pond attended to offer thanks to the City work crews that have kept the water flowing during this recent period of challenge.

A way of saying well done to the workforce that carried the community through the holidays and into the New Year.

Hopefully, residents in the city will soon gain an update from the civic government as to how that work has all gone so far, as well as what concerns remain.  

Along with some guidance from the elected officials as to when the City may hope to hear back from the Federal government towards their quest for funds to address the issue with a full replacement program.

More notes on the city's infrastructure issues can be explored through our archive page.


  1. City management doesn't have my thanks as a resident of Prince Rupert. Not bringing forward the dire situation of our water supply at every council meeting but then talk of CN Station and airport ferry relocation is failed budget and planning.

    1. you really need to chose a better target than CN/airport ferry. Its funded by a grant from the province, its a partnership with a local Indigenous nation Kitkatla, it revitalizes our severely limited/industrial dominated waterfront, it saves people getting stuck behind huge trains at Fairview, it creates a much more welcoming spot for newcomers to PR, and it replaces the really old / expensive to maintain ferry float at Fairview.

      If you want to try highlighting failed budget and planning, maybe try the so-called 'Eat Street'.

    2. want to talk about failed budget and planning?

      Remember in 2016 when the port authority said it would spend $25.5 million to revitalize and expand Cow Bay development?

      And remember they released their designs publicly in 2012?

      A decade later.... there's a parking lot. With trees that are not native to our area. With parking spots that are too small for trucks. With no proper drainage. With no pathway from the parking lot to the sidewalk. But oh the few covered picnic tables are nice until it starts to rain slightly sideways.

    3. Port management doesn't have my thanks as a resident of Prince Rupert for not bringing forward the Port Tax Cap for review so that our City has the funds it needs from industry to actually pay for these things.