Opening New Caledonia - Opening New Caledonia - Timeline 1954
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1954

Sawmills proliferated as 500 were established in and around Prince George. A population boom resulted, as families of millworkers moved into the area. At the time, transporting schoolchildren to town by bus was not considered practical. To solve this, portable classrooms were setup at the mill sites.

The city held a plebiscite regarding whether the library should become a civic institution. It passed with 80% support. The Prince George Library Commission, which had overseen library development since 1936, ceased to exist and the institution became the Prince George Public Library. From 1954, the library was administered by a council-appointed board. The city contributed most of the operating funds.

A Prince George couple, Mr. and Mrs. K. McDonald, installed a television set and antenna at their home during the first week of February. They were able to pick up a broadcast from Channel 4 in Seattle. This was the first television ever viewed in Prince George, a truly momentous occasion.

The RCMP detachment on Seventh Avenue was renovated to create a new court room. The installation of a prisoner’s dock and a witnesses’ stand would come later. A barristers’ chamber was added, and a hallway was eliminated to provide more working space for the constables.

CKPG installed state-of-the-art broadcast equipment in its new studio. With it, they were able to "reproduce with faithful fidelity standard recordings at 33,45 or 78 R.P.M. as well as transcriptions supplied for broadcast."

The city announced in February that it would soon employ a dog catcher. The by-law in effect allowed a dog to roam free at will as long as it was licensed. Some people believed that a Kelowna dog by-law should be emulated. In that city, dogs had to be licensed, and accompanied by a human when on a public street.

Alderman Carrie Jane Gray had built a reputation as a strong critic of the Mounted Police. She once reported an officer for driving through a stop sign. In 1954, she campaigned against police who speeded through school zones.

Taking the advice of medical and dental experts, City Council voted at the beginning of February to install fluoridation equipment as soon as it was practical to do so. The total cost was expected to be close to $8,000.

Mayor Bryant announced a three-phase building program to complete the civic recreational centre, including: constructing a swimming pool; developing parks and playlots; and reconstructing the civic arena and installing artificial ice.

In May, Mayor Bryant proposed that City Council begin meeting once a week; the city had grown considerably and there were more issues to deal with than could be handled by meeting just twice a month.


Photographic History of Prince George
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