Hays 2.0 is a future-oriented vision for the City of Prince Rupert that builds upon the ambitious vision of a global port metropolis developed by Charles Hays in the early 1900s. A century after his tragic death on the Titanic, Hays’ hope for Prince Rupert to be a world class port city is beginning to be realized.
Hays 2.0 aims to capture what Prince Rupertites care so deeply about: promoting economic resilience, protecting our natural environment, and working together to enhance our collective quality of life. The City of Prince Rupert’s Hays 2.0 vision is about inclusivity, diversity, First Nations partnerships, and our goal to be a sustainable, resilient and thriving community for the next 100 years.
Undertaking this vision is no small task. It will require optimism and patience, but in equal measure, hard work, determination, and cooperation.
Let’s work to get there, together.
Hays’ Vision 100 Years Ago
In 1910, Charles Hays founded Prince Rupert because of our location as the closest strategic point to Asia by sea. Hays worked to bring the Grand Trunk Pacific Railway from the East to Prince Rupert, with a plan to make our City the metropolitan center of British Columbia and northwestern terminus for the North American rail system. In 1912, Hays went to England to raise additional funds, bringing with him plans to build a hotel that would rival Victoria’s Empress. However, with the loss of Hays in the sinking of the Titanic, much of his vision stalled.
Though not everyone will find him a compelling figure, the story of Charles Hays is imprinted throughout Prince Rupert—with statues bearing his image, and the high school and adjacent mountain taking his name. Our reference to Hays’ vision is about acknowledging our history, while the ‘2.0’ is about moving on from those embedded stories and refocusing our direction towards new, unexplored horizons.
Hays’ plans are often associated with ‘what could have been’. Now is the time for the City of Prince Rupert to refocus on ‘what can be’.