Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Environment Canada expands its Northwest Forecast program

The ability to make for a more concise forecast is the guiding theme for Environment Canada as they expand on their online delivery of weather information for residents of the Northwest, splitting the North Coast Inland area into three distinct sections to better serve the public.

The new roll out of information delivery has been taking place over the last month with many areas of British Columbia receiving expanded forecast areas as part of the project, though for Prince Rupert, the coastal areas of the North Coast and Haida Gwaii the one forecast fits all model will remain in place.

Inland areas of the North Coast however seem to provide for a range of forecast challenges and with that in mind, Environment Canada now features more detailed forecasts for the North in Stewart, the Central area in Terrace and the southern portion of the region for Kitimat.

The main theme towards the change to the previous forecast delivery is to issue more targeted alerts when severe weather situations may come along.

For the most part it would seem that the largest benefit for then expanded forecast zones will come in the winter season, when winter storms make for treacherous conditions throughout much of the inland regions of the Northwest.

Some background to the new changes in the Forecast system can be found here.

The Inland areas of the North Coast
are one of a number of areas in BC
that Environment Canada has expanded on
their forecast delivery system.

A tutorial on how Environment Canada reviews approaching weather and delivers their forecasts and warnings can be found here.

You can explore some of the more severe weather items we have tracked in the past from our Weather Archive page here.

Council to consider Closed meetings process at tonight's session

Earlier this month we noted Councillor Blair Mirau's plans to introduce the topic of how Council approaches its Closed meetings process, with the councillor seeking some time for conversation on the theme as part of tonight's Regular Council session.

During that last session Mr. Mirau observed that he was looking to be proactive and called upon some of the recommendations from the ombudsperson's report on Best practices for Closed Council sessions as his guideline for the conversation at tonight's session.

The ten points the Councillor is putting forward for consideration as part of tonight's Agenda are as follows.

Council members won't have to do too much reference on the theme as they look to review his reading material and offer up a comment towards his thoughts on Closed meetings.

Prior to tonight's Council Session, the members attending City Hall tonight will have held a Closed Session at 6 PM, it marks the tenth time this year that they have taken to the Closed process to discuss civic concerns this year so far.

You can review more of what's ahead for tonight's council session from our preview here.

More background on City Council Discussion points can be found on our Archive page.

Council to hear proposal for cycling path to connect Civic Centre to Cow Bay/Rushbrook Trail

Looking towards McClymont Park
from the Civic Centre, an area
that would be part of a bike path
to the Cow Bay/Rushbrook area
Cyclists in the region may have their own pathway to travel by the fall of 2018, that is if a plan being put together by a local group comes together over the next few months.

If funding can be secured, the Kaien Island Trail Enhancement and Recreation Society has an ambitious plan in mind to rehabilitate and turn the McClymont Park Trail into a cycling path, something that has long been asked for by local cycling enthusiasts.

The project would offer  up a scenic pathway for cyclists to transit from the Civic Centre area on to the Cow Bay and Rushbrook Trail region on the east side of the city following much of the path of Hays Creek.

City Council will hear some of the details for the project tonight as Steve Millum makes a presentation to Council on the proposed path development and seek the City's approval of the concept before seeking funding from the BC Rural Dividend.

Should they get a green light from the City and secure the funding, planning and design work would start in the summer or fall of this year, and would be used for the tendering process sometime next spring.

A proposed cycling path would run along Hays Creek, from the
Civic Centre area to the Cow Bay/Rushbrook area

The Kaien Island Society made its request for an opportunity to address Council on May 8th,  some background on their proposal can be found below as part of a letter to Council.

If they receive approval and secure funding for the project, it's anticipated that it would be completed by the fall of 2018.

The Society is currently engaged in the remediation project for the Rushbrook Trail which we reviewed on the blog in February.

More of the project and an opportunity for Council members to ask questions. will be outlined as part of Council's Regular meeting tonight.

For more items related to City Council Discussion topics see our archive page here.

In addition to their website, you can learn more about the work of the Kaien Trails group from their Facebook page.

CFTK brings a familiar voice aboard as Prince Rupert reporter

Prince Rupert will soon once again be part of the news flow from the Terrace studios of CFTK TV, the position of a reporter for the North Coast has been vacant since late March when Cierra Wilson departed from her post at the Atlin Terminal offices and after a near two month job search the position is now seemingly filled.

And while it's a new face for CFTK, the voice will sound familiar for radio listeners as Bell Media brings Corey Callaghan onto the television's roster, with the newest TV reporter crossing over from the Terrace studios of radio station CFNR.

Mr. Callaghan offered up the breaking news himself with a twitter mention thanking his now former coworkers at the radio station, while looking forward to his new challenges ahead.

You can look for his contributions to the news cycle from Prince Rupert as part of the TV 7 News at 6 PM nightly.

For more items related to the media scene around the Northwest see our archive page here.

City Council Preview: Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Prince Rupert City Council moved up their regularly scheduled meeting of the 29th to tonight, the agenda for the evening offering up a short list of items to be considered for the last regularly scheduled meeting of the month.

When Council members gather this evening at 7 PM, they'll be reviewing a request for a letter of support for a trail project, hear some short notes on a pair of financial items from the Finance Department and consider a pair of proclamation requests.

They will look to address the final stages of a disposition of some land off of Graham Avenue and Councillor Mirau will also present his motion for consideration related to the nature of Council's Closed meetings process.

You can review the background documentation for tonight's Regular Session from the Agenda Package here.

As it is also a Committee of the Whole night, and the public will have opportunity to ask questions of Council members at Tuesday's session.

Council will also host a Closed Session starting at 6 PM.

The Regular  Council session starts off for the evening with the adoption of agendas and minutes.

Following that requirement, the line up for the night looks as follows.

Petitions and Delegations 

Mr. Steve Millum, Vice-President, Kaien Island Enhancement and Recreation Society - Update on the McClymont Park Trail Upgrade project -- Seeking a a letter of Support for funding applications. (Page 10 of the Agenda Package)

Any Notes on Unfinished Business will follow that presentation.

Reports and Recommendations is next on the Agenda listings.

Report from the Chief Financial Officer  -- Ms. Corinne Bomben the City's CFO will provide the Financial Variance Report for April  (Page 11 of the Agenda Package)

Report from the Chief Financial Officer -- Ms. Bomben will also provide some background to a Service Provider Agreement between the City of Prince Rupert and Tourism Prince Rupert for the purpose of Liability Insurance Coverage by the Municipal Insurance Association (page 16 of the Agenda Package)

Correspondences for Action

Council will consider two requests for a letter of support from North Coast Immigrant and Multicultural Services Society seeking two proclamation request.

One to Declare June 1st as International Day in the City of Prince Rupert, the second to proclaim June 15th as World Elder Abuse Awareness Day in the City of Prince Rupert  (Pages 20 and 21 of the Agenda)

Resolutions from Closed Meetings,

Bylaws mark the next item of the Agenda on the night.

Council will receive a report from the Corporate Administrator  regarding the Park Dedication and Removal and Disposal Bylaw for an area off of Graham Avenue. The bylaw is required to all for the disposition of the subject lands. (Page 22 of the Agenda Package)

The evening then moves on to Additional Items 

The evening will come to an end with Reports, Questions and Inquiries from Members of Council.

Councillor Mirau will introduce a topic for further discussion, allowing Council members to weigh in his motion that would direct Staff to develop an In Camera communications policy, incorporating the recommendations from the Ombudsperson's best practices guide: (see the Agenda package for the full listing of those elements under review)

Council members can also take advantage of the period to offer up any items or concerns that they have for consideration on the night.

The Live broadcast of the City Council session can be found here, a video archive of past sessions is available here.

Our archive of items related to the May 23 session can be found here.

While our archive of all sessions for 2017 for Council is available here.

City Council Session: Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Our archive of items from the session can be found below.

Regular Session of Council for May 23, 2017

Home page and archive of sessions can be found here.

Live Broadcast of session can be found here

North Coast Review -- Preview of Session for May 23, 2017

Agenda for Regular Council Session for May 23, 2017

Agenda for the Committee of the whole session for May 23, 2017

Notice of Closed meeting for May 23, 2017

Info to Council 

May 17, 2017


Mayor Lee Brain --
Councillor Barry Cunningham --
Councillor Nelson Kinney -- 
Councillor Blair Mirau -- 
Councillor Wade Niesh --  
Councillor Gurvinder Randhawa -- 
Councillor Joy Thorkelson -- 

Minutes of Regular Session of Council, May 23, 2017  (not available yet)

Video Recording of May 23, 2017  (not available yet)

North Coast Review City Council Timeline May 23, 2017  (not available yet)

North Coast Review Items related to the May 23, 2017 Session of Council 

Council to consider closed meetings process at tonight's session
Council to hear proposal for cycling path to connect Civic Centre to Cow Bay/Rushbrook Trail area

Media items from other sources for the May 23, 2017 session can be found in our Discussion Points from City Council feature.

Monday, May 22, 2017

Real Estate Tracker: Week ending May 21, 2017

Our weekly review of the listings of the local real estate agents, tracking those properties which appear to be driving the local price structure for the North Coast.

Every Monday, we look over the listing prices of the past seven days and outline the Top 10 asking prices in the area, providing a snap shot as to where the Real Estate market may be trending on a week to week basis.

The listings below are purely for information purposes, for further background on the properties recorded, see our links page for access to the individual real estate listings.

The Archive for our weekly review can be found here.

Our list of the top ten priced homes for the week ending May 21, 2017 is below:

Prince Rupert Real East  Side week ending May 21, 2017
Prince Rupert Real Estate West week ending May 21, 2017

The long weekend brings no change to the addresses of the list of ten properties of our review of the top end homes available for sale in Prince Rupert, though one property has seen a price drop, with the asking price for a Beach Place home reduced by 40,000 dollars.

As it was last week, of the collection of ten for this week, seven of the properties once can be found along the city's Graham Avenue, the waterfront listings continuing to push the overall value of the market upwards.

From the growing list of properties on Graham, two are listed at over the $800,000 mark, with two others noted as above the 750,000 mark

The top end listings for this week fined nine properties to the west side of the McBride Street dividing line, leaving the east side listings to count just one on the list of the last seven days.

With the change, the lower range of pricing shifts to a value of $475,000, while our top end from the last week is again listed at $829,000.

Below find our findings as of the Week ending May 21, 2017

2280 Graham Avenue                   $829,000 --   Remax
2200 Graham Avenue                   $810,000 --   Remax
1830 Graham Avenue                   $799,000 --   Realty Executives
1881 Graham Avenue                   $750,000 --   Remax
1810 Graham Avenue                   $660,000  --  Remax
1208 Beach Place                          $549,000 --  Remax
1805 Graham Avenue                   $562,000  --  Royal Lepage
613 Cassiar Avenue                      $495,000 --  Remax
1724 Graham Avenue                   $489,000 --  Remax
1424 11th Avenue East                 $475,000 -- Remax
For more items related to Real Estate see our archive page here.

For background on Housing issues in the region see our past items here.

Saturday, May 20, 2017

Blog Watching: Week ending May 21, 2017

Roads made for a theme on the week, with news from the District of Port Edward and concerns about traffic loads in Prince Rupert making for two of the five most read items of the week.

Our look at the launch of a comment period for the Wampler Way Bypass road in Port Edward proved to be a popular item, while Prince Rupert Council member Barry Cunningham's thoughts on container truck traffic through the city also made for topic of note.

Also cracking the top five on the week, some background on the Federal Government's plans for an oil tanker moratorium on the North Coast and Haida Gwaii

Two more civic notes rounded out the list of five for the week, with City Council's decision to join in with other Northwest communities to attract workers to the region getting some good audience numbers, as did our overview of some of the events that Mayor Lee Brain had an opportunity to take in while he was attending the three days of the Renewable Cities conference in Vancouver .

Our top story however, takes us down the highway to the District of Port Edward and their plans for highway construction, a significant indication in some growing interest for industrial growth for their community.

Wampler Way Bypass proposal now taking public comments -- A major infrastructure project for the District of Port Edward would see a road capable of accepting heavy loads built to bypass the populated section of the District. The first step towards its possible construction is an application with the Ministry of Forest, Lands and Natural Resources, which is currently in the process of seeking comments from the public. (posted May 19, 2017)

That article was followed by:

Downtown paving project has Councillor Cunningham reinforcing need for container truck bypass route -- With some major paving projects underway in the community, Councillor Barry Cunningham once again has raised his concerns over truck traffic travelling through the downtown core and making more inquiries as to the plans for a container port bypass road.   (posted May 16, 2017)

Federal Government moves forward with North Coast/Haida Gwaii oil tanker ban  - Some background on the May 12th announcement from the Federal Government, putting in place an oil tanker moratorium for the North Coast and Haida Gwaii.  (posted May 15, 2017)

City of Prince Rupert to join Northwest initiative for worker recruitment -- The City of Prince Rupert announced its plan to work with other communities and Regional Districts in the region to attract workers to the area    (posted May 15, 2017)

Mayor Brain to explore environmental issues at Renewable cities conference -- Prince Rupert's Mayor was on the road this weekend, taking in a three day conference in Vancouver related to sustainable cities . (posted May 17, 2017)

You can find our weekly Blog watching featured posted every Sunday morning by 9AM, a handy way to catch up to the week that was, at a leisurely weekend pace.

You can also review the full listings of the week just past from our Blog Archive index page found on the right hand side of the page.

For those looking for updates to items as they are posted to the blog, don't forget about our email alert access.

A daily review of the latest items on the blog can be delivered to your email in box, simply by entering your email address into the information bar, items posted to the blog will be delivered to your e-mail account each day.

You can find the link to that feature on the upper, right hand side of the blog. It can be found underneath the Follow the North Coast Review by Email indicator.

Our archive of weekly Blog Watching can be found here

Friday, May 19, 2017

MS Regatta arrival launches 2017 Cruise Ship season in Prince Rupert

The MS Regatta is back to launch
the 2017 Cruise ship Season on
the North Coast
684 potential new acquaintances began exploring Prince Rupert this morning, as the Oceania Cruise Line vessel MS Regatta pulled up to the Northland Cruise Terminal, signalling the launch of a new Cruise season on the North Coast.

The Regatta arrived  in port at 10 AM with the first of the passengers coming off the vessel shortly after 11.

Those that came ashore were heading off under light clouds and occasional bursts of Sun, set to learn more about the region, whether on tour, or by foot exploration through the downtown and Cow Bay areas and beyond.

The vessel is set to depart from Northland at 7 PM tonight.

The first port call for 2017 heralds an expanded schedule of arrivals as Prince Rupert cruise officials look to continue to establish the community as a stop of interest for the Alaska Cruise providers who transit the West Coast from Vancouver and Seattle North to Juneau and Anchorage.

Passengers started coming ashore around 11 AM today, as they take in the
attractions and sights of Prince Rupert and the North Coast.
The MS Regatta sets sail from Northland Dock at 7 PM tonight

Final preparations were underway through the week as tour providers reviewed their plan for their guests and in the case of the bus tour that rolls through the city provided for a dry run of their route.

Prince Rupert's Cruise Ambassador Program was on hand today for their first day of a season that will take them through to the last ship of the year on October 1st, when the largest ship of the year The Norwegian Jewel, calls on the city.

Those working through the Cruise season will ease into their work with only two port visits set for May and June, July will be the busiest month with eight port calls, August features seven and September four.

Cruise Prince Rupert has an online presentation available to inform visitors as to what's available in the community when they cross over the walkway at Northland Terminal this year.

The Prince Rupert Port Authority also has some overall information on the industry, as well as some background on the facilities that are part of the Prince Rupert cruise infrastructure.

The 2017 Cruise Schedule can be found below:

You can follow the latest notes from the 2017 Cruise season from our archive page here.

Concerns from Mills Memorial Hospital Radiology results review expands to other health organizations

The recent review of results from the Radiology Department at Mills Memorial Hospital in Terrace has apparently set in motion a more expansive review of the past work of Doctor Claude Vezina.

The Terrace based radiologist is currently listed as being under voluntary leave from Northern Health, placed in that status once the health authority announced its review period had commenced.

In an article published on Thursday, the Vancouver Sun relayed the news of an additional two reviews that are now in motion.

The first is a review to be conducted by the College of Physicians and Surgeons of British Columbia which oversees matters of professional conduct in the province.

The Sun also notes that a second review has been taking place through the North West Territories Health and Social Services Authority.

In March, the CBC reported that there are over 2,000  images in the process of being re-read to review the past results from Stanton Hospital when Dr. Vezina was working in that jurisdiction.

Also watching the news out of the west with some interest is the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario, previous to his time in Western Canada, the radiologist was based out of Timmins, Ontario.

As part of their report, the Vancouver Sun has noted that a former Ontario radiologist had expressed some concerns related to the quality of Dr. Vezina's work as part of an eighteen page complaint to officials in the Ontario health system.

The Sun reports that no disciplinary action had been taken at that time, though it's not clear if Ontario plans any further review as a result of the latest developments in British Columbia or the North West Territories.

The first indication of any concern over the results from the Northwest came in February, as Northern Health announced that a review of the work of the Terrace based radiologist who has been  was conducted by radiologists at Vancouver General Hospital.

As we noted in April, from the findings from that review, it was determined that of the 8,400 images that had been examined, 10.3 percent had resulted in a different interpretation that is considered clinically significant.

Northern Health has since forwarded letters to 700 patients advising them to contact their personal doctors to determine if their health care requirements need to be adjusted.

The last public update offered by the Northern Health website comes from this item from April 7th, to this point, the Health Authority has not provided any further information related to the image reviews or on the current status of Dr. Vezina.

You can review the full overview from the Vancouver Sun here, beyond the latest details related to the results reviews, reporter Pamela Fayerman explores some of the plans in motion by provincial officials to ensure that such a situation doesn't occur again.

More notes related to Northern Health are available on our archive page here.

4.1 temblor recorded off of Tofino this morning

The recently quite active fault line running along the West Coast of Vancouver Island shuddered a bit in the early morning hours today. The event registering at the USGS offices as a 4.1 magnitude temblor, recorded 221 kilometres off the coast of Tofino.

The quake which had a depth of 10 kilometres was reported at 5:19 this morning.

The seismic event does note seem to have been noticed in any Vancouver Island communities and did not generate any concerns related to tsunami warnings.

The morning temblor is just the latest of a number of similar sized seismic events to travel along that fault line in recent months.

More notes related to seismic activity in British Columbia and Southeast Alaska can be found on our archive page here.

Northern Savings offers tips for computer protection in wake of ransomware attacks

In the fallout of the recent ransomeware Internet attacks of the last  few weeks, the Northwest Financial Services Institute Northern Savings has offered reassurance to its customers that they have taken all steps required to protect the Prince Rupert based financial organization from any attack on their computer systems.

The most recent global attack was called Wanna Cry and was a large scale online attack which affected over 150 countries targeting a number of professional and commercial institutions, locking keyboards and computers and denying access to users until a ransom was paid, with most of the unlucky targets told to use the Bitcoin monetary system to unlock their computers.

Wired magazine recently offered up some background on the growing threat posed by the computer hostage takers.

In an information page posted to their website, Northern Savings provided some background to the work that they have done locally along with their technology partners and IT department to ensure that cybersecurity protection remains strong when it comes to their corporate servers and files.

They also pass along some advice from their security advisers as to what measures their customers can take to protect their own computers from what seems to be a never ending string of attempts to gain access or information from our home files.

Besides a suggestion to upgrade and update anti virus protection on home computers, the Northern Savings notes include a look at how email addresses have become a vulnerable point for the home computer.

One of the areas most vulnerable during these types of events is your email address. Attackers try to maximize the impact by sending series of emails targeting corporate users with requests for action. Either providing login credentials, authorizing transactions or downloading documents under suggesting subjects like “Urgent” or “Please Reply Immediately”. 

In most cases, the originating email addresses look like valid email addresses, but if you look closely, you can tell the difference. One of the key strategies is to register email addresses with a missing or extra letter in the name. Other forms of spoofing include replacing letters with numbers or registering fake domains with similar grammar.

Northern Savings also outlines what customers of their institution should do if they have concerns about any email that they may receive that might be suspicious.

 If you receive any email over the next few days with an unusual subject line, we recommend contacting the sender directly via telephone. If you receive an email from Northern Savings that looks suspicious please do not hesitate and contact your local branch. We will be more than happy to look at it and assist you if needed.

You can review the full range of the Information notes from Northern Savings here.

For more items related to the Northwest Commercial scene see our archive page here.

Wampler Way Bypass proposal now taking public comment

The planning process for a proposed new roadway around the populated area of the District of Port Edward is moving forward into the public comment phase this month, as the Ministry of Forest, Lands and Natural Resources begins to accept feedback from the public related to the Wampler Way Bypass Road.

As part of the process, the District of Port Edward has filed an application with the Ministry that outlines the nature of the road construction project and the various elements that will mark its development.

The report created by the Prince Rupert office of McElhanney engineering, follows up on some preliminary work earlier this decade on the project, that timeline however had been postponed pending further progress with the Pacific NorthWest LNG project.

The high profile and at times controversial LNG project has yet to be given a full green light by the Malaysian energy company Petronas, which continues to consult with local stakeholders and international partners.

Back in 2014, the District of Port Edward reached a twenty five year agreement with Pacific NorthWest LNG , one aspect of that agreement which could deliver 150 million dollars to the district over that period was the more immediate need for funding for development of the infrastructure in the community.

The District has also accessed funding from the Federal and Provincial governments for the proposed bypass road, with the Wampler Way project one of a number of local infrastructure issues that received support in July of 2015.

The Port Edward report, now available for review on line, offers up a glimpse into the details for the ambitious infrastructure project in the community.

There are five key areas examined in relation to the new roadway which has been planned to manage the impact of rapid industrial development on the community, with the initial focus on the development of the proposed Pacific NorthWest LNG terminal project.

Those five areas of note include:

a) Limit urban commercial and residential growth between Skeena Drive / Highway 599 at the future Bypass Road, and create a land use divide between future industrial and residential expansion areas; 

b) Create a safe bypass route for future industrial traffic by avoiding Skeen Drive school zones within the community; 

c) Facilitate development of the Wolf Creek Industrial Area; 

d) Serve as a temporary heavy haul route during the construction phase of the proposed Pacific Northwest (PNW) LNG export facility on Lelu Island. 

e) Provide access to camp supplier Civeo, who has purchased land in the southern vicinity of proposed Wampler Way.

One of the maps from a Report on the Wampler Way Bypass proposal
which highlights the path of the road around the District of Port Edward

The road design was modified from the earlier project work and with the construction of the AltaGas camp land in Port Edward in mind, the latest version of the report provides some background to that change.

McElhanney received direction from the District of Port Edward and PNW LNG to proceed with OSW Option C alignment. 

The north end of the alignment was shifted west to align with the proposed access to the AltaGas lands north of Skeena Drive / Highway 599 and create one four-leg, full movement intersection. 

Where required, the alignment was also adjusted to minimize impacts to private property.

You can review a full overview of the proposed roadway project here.

Those looking to make comments related to the project can access the comment process here.

The deadline for comments related to the application comes up on June 3rd.

More items of interest from Port Edward can be found on our archive page here.

Thursday, May 18, 2017

Decision Day for Thrive North contestants, with Finale set for North Coast Convention Centre

The North Coast Convention Centre
is the host for tonight's Finale of
the Thrive North Business Challenge

Northwest entrepreneurs will be waiting with anticipation through the day today as the final stage of the Thrive North Business Challenge takes place in Prince Rupert later this evening.

The annual event returns to the city tonight from 5:30 to 8:30 PM, taking place at the North Coast Meeting and Convention Centre, part of the Chances building on First Avenue West.

Twelve finalists have put their plans up for review all in quest for up  to $10,000 dollars in funding money, as well as a $5,000 prize that is up for grabs through audience vote.

The candidates make their final pitches between 6 and 7:30 tonight, following the outline of their proposals, those taking in the Challenge will then have an opportunity to view some of the offerings of the Marketplace and connect with local business owners and past entrepreneur champions.

The Final portion of tonight's celebration of Entrepreneurial spirit takes place from 8 to 8:30 when the Awards are handed out and the proposals that most impressed the judges, as well as the audience vote award celebrated.

Three Categories make for the main awards for tonight; Best new business (ages 18-28), Best new Business (ages 29 to 39) and Best Growth opportunity.

There are three Prince Rupert residents in among the mix of those looking to see their plans make it to the finish line tonight:

Reid Skelton-Morven will share some background about his company Skeena Exterior Cleaning and Coatings.

Meghann Patterson will outline her plan to start up an exterior house cleaning business.

Marcie Leblanc, who is already established in the city's Cow Bay area has expansion plans on her mind and will share her vision of increasing her business footprint through e-commerce and Pop Up store opportunities.

Snapshot profiles of all the contestants in the Thrive North Challenge can be found here.

Tonight's event is free to the public and offers up a chance to learn more about some of the percolating business plans that are in the minds of the twelve entrepreneurs.

A look at some background towards tonight's awards is available here.

The audience vote balloting is taking place online and you can cast your vote for tonight's award here.

In addition to the competition between entrepreneurs, the Thrive North Program included a number of business planning workshops taking place in the Northwest through the month.

Tonight's awards program is sponsored in part by Northern Savings and CityWest, while the Thrive North program is supported by Futurepreneur, Prince Rupert LNG and the Province of British Columbia.

You can find out more information explaining what Thrive North is all about here

More background on Commercial notes for the Northwest can be found on our archive page here.

Prince Rupert Salmonid Enhancement Society to benefit from donation by Pacific NorthWest LNG

Funding for the Oldfield Creek Fish
Hatchery will see a number of projects
can a cash infusion thanks to a donation
from Pacific NorthWest LNG
The work at the Oldfield Creek Fish Hatchery will benefit from some much needed cash, as Pacific NorthWest LNG makes a significant donation to the Prince Rupert Salmonid Enhancement Society.

As part of an announcement from Wednesday that announced the 75,000 dollars in funding for the group, Tessa Gill Vice-President of External Affairs for the the Canadian operations of the global LNG corporation made note of the work that the local society does in the community when it comes to education and stock replenishment on the North Coast.

 “Pacific NorthWest LNG appreciates the historic, economic and cultural importance of salmon for all those who reside in northwest British Columbia,” .. “The vital work in sustainability and education conducted by the Prince Rupert Salmonid Enhancement Society represents a significant community benefit, something that we are proud to support.”

The Salmonid enhancement society already has plans in mind for the additional funding, dedicating some of the money towards an operations vehicle for the facility on Wantage Road.

Mike McDowall from the Society also noted that the Oldfield Creek hatchery can use the funds to further some of their ongoing plans for the popular location.

"This contribution will help Oldfield Creek Hatchery of the future with funding for engineering plans for a major rebuild of our outside rearing area. Our efforts to raise salmon over the winter are hampered continually as our rearing area is exposed to below-zero temperatures, is open to predators, and has equipment is well over 30 years old."

The Hatchery and Society, which is staffed by volunteers, raise over 660,000 eggs from a number of species of fish, the Wantage Road location has become a frequent stop for local students and visitors to the community, eager to learn more about the cycle of life for fish and the work of the local organization.

They raise funds through the year in the community for the range of programs that they host at the site and previously renovated their information displays to expand the education program. Earlier this month volunteers helped out to raise a new bridge as part of the improved trail system at the site.

More background on their work was included as part of the funding announcement from Wednesday.

The Oldfield Creek Hatchery is currently putting the finishing touches on their annual Smolt Fest celebrations, set for May 27th from 1 to 9 PM, this years event will mark the ninth year that the festival has taken place.

More information on that event and the work of the Hatchery can be found on their Facebook page here.

For notes related to the Pacific NorthWest LNG project see our archive page here.

For more Community Events observations see our archive page here.

NWCC celebrates Grads success today at Prince Rupert campus

It's graduation season on the North Coast and today some of the students that have completed their studies at the Prince Rupert campus of Northwest Community College will be honoured, taking part in the afternoon convocation celebration to be held on campus.

As has been the case in the past, College officials, representatives of the Board of Governors, as well as from the City of Prince Rupert are anticipated to be in attendance at today's event.

They will be joining in on the chorus of best wishes to those who have completed their studies in a range of programs hosted at the Prince Rupert campus, the grads set to receive their diplomas as part of the send off today.

As part of the afternoon event, the graduates will receive counsel on their future path by way of a number of addresses to the students, they will also take in a performance from First Nations drummers.

A small reception is to take place following the formal part of the day's program.

The Prince Rupert event takes place in advance of a larger convocation ceremony planned for Terrace on June 1st. That event set for the REM Lee theatre will be larger in scope, covering a number of programs that are offered at all of the NWCC campus locations in the Northwest.

As part of the Terrace convocation a number of college awards will be handed out in recognition of service to the college and its students.

You can review the process for the graduation ceremonies from the NWCC website

For more items related to Northwest Community College see our archive page here.

City's waterline infrastructure plans capture the attention of Industrial publication

The city's Woodworth Lake
Dam and waterline project
is getting some attention 
from a Business publication
(photo from City of
Prince Rupert annual report
The challenge of replacing a water line system that is over 100 years old is one has capture the attention of a writer for a Western Canada based publication that highlights transportation and industrial developments.

The City's Woodworth Lake Waterline replacement project  recently found itself listed among the items of interest for a recent online article from the widely read Journal of Commerce.

The review of the city's plans comes from Peter Kenter, as part of his look into the project Kenter traces some of the history of the water line first built in 1909, grabbing some background notes from a number of city officials to explain how the project will move forward, phase, by phase, by phase.

As it's a a publication that deals mostly with the industrial side of project development, the work of Kledo construction, the company that is based out of Fort St. John and which was awarded the 6.9 million dollar project makes for  the bulk of the articles theme.

Brent Doyle, the owner of Kledo construction provides for some of the unique challenges that the project poses as it works towards a tight timeline of 145 days which got underway in April.

Among some of the prep work that is reviewed is the work required to put the pipeline itself in place and some of the logistical pieces that are required for a project of this scale, including the use of a nearby lumber sorting yard for staging for the project elements.

From that site, barges will be used to transport soil, HDPE pipe, fusing equipment and construction vehicles to the site. By the time the project is complete it's anticipated that Kledo will have unloaded between 100 and 120 barges of material and equipment.

One of the unique aspects of the project is that the company can't trench or excavate the area and instead has arranged to bring in top soil from Spring Creek Aggregates in Terrace, such is the challenge of bringing the pipeline across the terrain that in some places along the route the company will need to be laying soil as deep as five metres.

Doyle makes note of how his company's past experience in Northern British Columbia and the Northwest Territories and how those jobs have provided them with the background to tackle the City's waterline project.

The article also reviews the city's financing plans for the project, noting that the 8.6 million dollars required to this point will come from federal and provincial grants from the Clean Water and Wastewater Fund, with 1.5 million of the total to be supplied by the Prince Rupert Legacy Fund.

The first and second phases of the project are destined to be followed by the final stage of the three part replacement plan, with the City currently in the process of applying for funding to replace the water supply lines that travel under the water to Seal Cove.

The cost of Phase Three of the infrastructure program has been estimated to be at 2.4 million dollars.

You can review the Journal of Commerce article here.

More items of note related to the city's waterline projects can be found on our Infrastructure archive page.

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Mayor Brain to explore environmental issues at Renewable cities conference

The environment, areas of renewable and efficient energy and themes of making our urban areas more sustainable will make for three days of discussion starting today in Vancouver as the 2017 Renewable Cities Vancouver Forum kicks off.

The gathering is bringing together a large cross section of municipal politicians, provincial officials and industry representative to Vancouver and representing the North Coast at that forum of learning will be Prince Rupert Mayor Lee Brain, who will be in attendance as part of his membership in the BC Mayors Climate Leadership Council.

The Mayor's trip to Vancouver comes following Prince Rupert City Council recently reviewed their approach to environmental targets and larger initiatives for the community, setting in motion an update towards the city's goals for the future.

Last week Mayor Lee Brain
gave Prince Rupert council a
preview of his plan to attend the
Renewable cities conference taking
place in Vancouver Wed-Fri.
During the course of that discussion last week,  Mayor Brain noted for Council that as part of his membership with the Climate Leadership Council he would be travelling to Vancouver for the large scale event, eager to explore a range of themes and hosts a number of seminars, speeches and work shops on environmental themes.

Sustainability issues have also been a frequent topic for the Mayor at Prince Rupert City Council, with the Mayor creating a 2030 Sustainable City plan, and leading a working group out of City Hall to work on those issues.

Those initiatives are one of the key elements of his Hays 2.0 plan from two years ago.

As he takes in the range of activities that are available for the delegates, a few of the themes that may be of interest for the Mayor through the event include:


Mayor's Dialogue: from City Leadership to Global Impact
Renewable Cities need Renewable Buildings
How Can Cities Get Smart(er) and Prepare for Disruptive Technologies
Canadian Municipalities Committed to 100% renewable energy
Private Sector and Partners for Cities
Advocacy Campaign Clinic: Bringing Citizens, Elected Officials and Business Groups on the 100% road trip
Transforming municipal processes and structures towards the local energy transition
How Non Renewable energy is changing conventional thinking about energy for Cities


Transformative actions on the road to 100% renewable energy in cities
The role of renewable energy in resilient cities
Kickstarting renewables and energy projects in cities by building strong business cases
From Alaska to Australia, remote communities are quietly leading in renewable energy implementation
How States and Provinces can promote renewable energy leadership by Municipalities

You can review the full agenda for those in attendance at the Renewable Cities Forum from the 2017 Forum program here.

A short synopsis of the event taking place at the Four Seasons Hotel in downtown Vancouver is available here.

You can review some of the progress from the event from the Renewable cities twitter feed, Facebook page and website.

An example of the kind of information that the Mayor will be absorbing during his stay in the lower mainland can be found from the video below that was part of the 2015 Vancouver conference.

The first opportunity for the Mayor to share his findings from the Vancouver conference will come with the May 23rd Council session.

More notes related to topics from Prince Rupert City Council can be found on our Discussion Archive page.

Campsites ready to welcome May long weekend invasion

Earlier this week we noted that one option was off the list for this weekend for those looking to explore the Great Northwest outdoors this long weekend, with our item related to the closure of the Exstew site to the public until after the holiday weekend.

However, while Exstew will remain closed, the region's provincial campgrounds are ready to accept campers and if tradition holds to past patterns, spots will be going fast as the traffic flow of Friday heads out of of town.

Lakelse Lake, Kelanza Creek and Prud'homme Provincial Park campgrounds opened for the season last weekend with this weekend set to provide the first big test of the season for campers seeking a spot to set up their trailers or tents.

However, as we get closer to the May Long exodus there is probably a good chance that many of the available spots have already been spoken for through the provincial registration process.

Owing to the limited sites available for two of the three major sites in the region, the registration process only allows for 30 percent of the space to be reserved at both the Prud'homme and Kleanza  Creek locations with reservations taken up to two days  before arrival.

The remaining site sat those two locations are available on a first come, first served basis

As for the most popular destination of the Northwest, of this morning the two of the three available camping zones at Lakelse Lake were listed as fully booked, with only Group Site G1 still listed as an option for the weekend.

Prud'homme Lake lists 24 campsites as booked, with the remaining 14 available on the first come, first served process as the weekend approaches.

Kleanza Creek lists 10 campsites as booked, with the remaining 24 available as first come, first served.

Some new features are in place at the Lakelse site, which is the largest campsite in the region and has long been a favourite getaway location for those living in the Northwest.

Among the new additions to the site located between Terrace and Kitimat are more electrical hook ups available, with 51 of the Lakelse camping spots now serviced by 30 amp electrical service.

As well, new docks and an improved boat launch have been put in place, while an upgrade has also been made to the Amphitheatre which remains a scenic location for wedding photos and other special events.

You can review all of the provincial camping sites and explore their availability here.

CHSS Drama offers one more viewing of FREAK for Prince Rupert Audience

Having already won an award in Terrace at the Regional Drama Zones and taken to the Big Stage of Provincials in Vancouver, Drama students at Charles Hays Secondary are ready to offer up one more opportunity for Prince Rupert residents to take in their production of FREAK.

The play is FREAK the award winning one act play from Angela Hill that the Charles Hays group brings to life at 8:00 tomorrow evening on the Lester centre stage.

The CHSS troupe took the presentation to Vancouver in April for the Provincial showcase, where they also took in a number of workshops as part of the high profile provincial drama event.

Thursday's presentation is the latest production as part of the popular the CHSS Dessert Theatre concept, which serves as a fundraiser and celebration of the success of the CHSS drama department.

As well as the showcase event, the evening from the stage will also feature Improv games and a chance to sample some of the many creative desserts throughout the foyer that will be available as part of the evening. Those in attendance can also take part in the Silent Auction of the homemade desserts as part of the wrap up to the night.

Doors open at 7:30 with tickets selling for ten dollars, they are available from members of the cast and crew, at the Charles Hays Front office or at the door on show night.

The cast and crew from the CHSS Drama department presentation of FREAK
will offer up a chance to take in their show tomorrow night at 8 PM at the Lester Centre

The Charles Hays Secondary twitter feed, has a number of photos and videos posted that followed some of the CHSS drama department's travels through the year.

For more items related to CHSS see our archive page here.

A review of other Community events can be found here.

Port's Community Investment Fund provides help to Prince Rupert Hospice Society

The local society that provides for  end of life care in the community has been expanding its program of care for families in the region over the last year and part of that expansion has been through a 90,000 dollar project.

The society which has been providing end of life care for eight years now on the North Coast has been active in recent years to raise awareness of their work and to make the experience less of a burden on families in the final stages of their family members lives.

A signficant portion of the funding for their most recent project has been delivered through the Prince Rupert Port Authority's Community Investment Fund, which has contributed $36,500 towards the project, one of 14 organizations, businesses and individuals in the region that have stepped up to lend a financial hand towards the palliative care project.

Port CEO and President Don Krusel noted the important work that the Prince Rupert Hospice Society provides to the community through their work and how the Port welcomed the opportunity to offer their support to their efforts.

“Providing a comfortable end-of-life experience for our community members is a noble cause, and we’re appreciative of the steadfast dedication shown by the volunteers of the Prince Rupert Hospice Society,”  ...“It’s a testament to the kind and considerate nature of Rupertites that palliative care is available in our community, and it's our privilege to support the Society’s work through the Community Investment Fund.”

Palliative care facilities at Prince Rupert
Regional Hospital have been upgraded
as part of a project hosted by the
Prince Rupert Hospice Society
The money that has been raised is being put to use through renovations at Prince Rupert Hospital to two patient rooms and the visitor room that is in place for families  during the end of life process at the hospital.

Included in the renovations was the installation of counter tops, cupboards, blinds and flooring as well as new paint for the rooms.

Each of the patients rooms was upgraded with new mattresses, couches and chairs while donated art work now can be seen on the walls.

Judy Ridell, the President of the Prince Rupert Hospice Society outlined how thankful the local group is to have received support from the community and how that assistance will go further to providing for compassionate care in the community.

“We’re always grateful for the support we receive from the community to provide compassionate care for those nearing the end of life, and contributions from organizations like the Port of Prince Rupert went a long way to improving that care for present and future patients,”  ...“This project also makes the experience more comfortable for families and friends who want to spend time with their loved ones at end of life.”

A new look for the palliative care rooms at Prince Rupert Regional Hospital
has been introduced by the Prince Rupert Hospice Society

(photo courtesy of Prince Rupert Port Authority twitter feed)

More background on the fund raising project can be found from this information release from today.

You can learn more about the Prince Rupert Hospice Society and their work from their Facebook page

More items related to community events can be found on our archive page here.