Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Mayor Pond buzzes your neighbourhood

Perhaps potentially running the risk of violating any number of aviation regulations, Prince Rupert's Mayor of the Air, Herb Pond, took an impromptu tour of his domain while returning from the onerous task of attending to out of town meetings.

While gazing upon the vista of his land, he dared only the "practiced pessimist" among us to find any tarnish on all that is now glittering in Canada's next great Port city .
He recounted his airborne observations for the Northern View, which judging by the amount of ink dedicated to the mayor's meditations of late, must surely be contemplating a name change to Pravda. Though athey should be wary at the View, once that newfangled blackberry technology arrives, perhaps his days as an ink stained contributor will be no more.
Giving way to a new wireless era of Pond on Demand!
From the Gambling mecca of downtown, to the latest pizza parlour, through the newest in housing developlments to the giant cranes of the waterfront, the Mayor sees and reports back on all.

Community development provides reason to celebrate
By mayor herb pond
Aug 29 2007

Last Tuesday a small group of us flew in from a very successful set of meetings in Ketchikan, and our pilot detoured for a few circles over the newly arrived cranes at the container terminal. Only a practiced pessimist could miss the excitement of this particular juncture in the Prince Rupert story.

We then flew low and slow past the newly opened Pizza Hut and the expansive decks and floor-to-ceiling windows of the nearly completed gaming center. One last side trip took us for some tight circles over the freshly poured foundations in the Edwards Avenue housing development. Exciting doesn’t begin to cover it.

Whether at our meetings in Alaska or Vancouver or here at home, the signs are unmistakable: Prince Rupert is being reborn and we have lots to celebrate.

At the same time there is still so much to be done.

Slightly less than a year ago a small group of us sat with the Premier and reviewed a list of the top ten issues that Prince Rupert needs to address to become Canada’s next great port city.

Telecommunications, air services, housing, labour attraction and retail expansion were all on the list.

The Premier got it right away, and assigned the file to two key Ministers. That produced a series of very high level meetings and resulted in the hiring of a Northern Gateway coordinator to be located at the hub of the activity in Prince Rupert. Together with a broad group of partners we are actively tackling the top ten list and last week’s announcement by CityWest of the advent of mobile data (Blackberry, text messaging, etc.) is just one small showing of both our intention and our determination.

So over the next few years there will lots to celebrate and it’s important that we do. But then let’s remind each other of the work that is still to be done in renewing this one-of-a-kind community.

We aren’t just after a little more economic development. We are building Canada’s next great port city.

No comments: