A crosswalk on Third Avenue West has faded paint, despite being painted less than a year before. (Shannon Lough / The Northern View)

Council reviews crosswalk contract and updating a decades-old development bylaw

Prince Rupert city council met on March 26 for a meeting, public hearings and committee of the whole

Faded crosswalks

Faded paint at crosswalks looks like chalk, according Councillor Barry Cunningham, who once again raised the issue at the March 26 council meeting.

“I drove around town and it looks like they’ve used chalk dust on some of the lines — they’re just not there. They were painted last summer, and yet years ago you would walk across the crosswalk and the paint would be built up. This here is just gone and it’s not even a year,” Cunningham said.

“Whatever type of paint is used, if we have to get a contractor to come back every year to do repaint those lines, there’s something wrong with this picture.”

Mayor Lee Brain said he believes it’s standard procedure to paint the crosswalks every year.

City manager Robert Long said the paint doesn’t stick to new pavement on Third Avenue West and Second Avenue as well, adding that more gravel was used on the road this winter which could contribute to faded paint. Long said he could get a complete report from the contractor.

“I’d like to see better value for our dollar,” Cunningham said. He said the crosswalks used to be painted by an in-house team. He doesn’t remember them painting every year.

However, Long said the reason the city switched from an in-house team to a contractor was because the painting didn’t get done.

READ MORE: Prince Rupert officer charged after pedestrian struck at crosswalk

Development bylaw

After more than 30 years, Prince Rupert city council is looking at updating the development procedure bylaw, which oversees land use regulation, the official community plan, development and variance permits.

“The old one was very rudimentary and simple, this one is just a little more complex,” city planner Zeno Krekic said of the development procedure bylaw, which was originally adopted in 1987.

One of the changes under review includes a six-month deadline for companies interested in development projects to indicate they are still interested in pursuing a project.

“In the past, we did not have a specific time limit at which time the applicant has to respond in order for us to know if they are continuing in being interested,” Krekic said.

READ MORE: Deal for Kanata school property falls through

Innovation Lab funding

Devlin Fernandes and Nathan Randall from Prince Rupert’s branch of Ecotrust Canada presented an update on the North Coast Innovation Lab. The socio-economic project recently finished a six-month interview process with 45 community members to research local initiatives and ideas.

Fernandes and Randall also asked for city council’s support in applying for a grant through the Northern Development Initiative Trust. There would be no financial commitment from the city for the 18-month $70,000 ask from the Strategic Initiatives Fund.

Cunningham once again raised the idea of a fish market in Rupert, which Randall said is part of the initiatives the Innovation Lab is exploring to help grow the local economy. This summer, Ecotrust will be hiring two graduate students for the season. One of the students will study the fishing economy in the area, which could lead to a market.

“One complaint I get all the time is we live in a port city, and you can’t buy fresh seafood from the fishermen,” Cunningham said, adding that he’d like a market open by this summer.

The project based in Prince Rupert recently received $100,000 from the BC Rural Dividend Fund. Council moved a motion to support the joint grant application.

READ MORE: North Coast Innovation Lab granted $100,000



keili.bartlett@thenorthernview.com

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