What we heard for 2021 released
Today the City of St. John's released its What we Heard document regarding this project for 2021. The document incudes information on what was heard from public and business community stakeholders as well as the inclusion community and transportation sector. Highlights of what we heard include:
- Generally, there is a view that the Downtown Pedestrian Mall is well liked and used by the public; this perspective differed, depending on which section of the mall was discussed.
- Both the businesses on Duckworth St. and users of the mall felt the Duckworth St. addition did not add significantly to the mall and many business owners felt it negatively impacted business on the street.
- While the animation added for 2021 was seen as a positive addition, some noted it was spotty and not always well promoted. Some suggested hiring professional event organizers. These comments were made by both businesses and members of the public.
- Many public people suggested increasing the timelines of the mall or adding a winter/holiday mall. This was also noted by some business operators.
- While improvements in accessibility were noted for 2021, there were still challenges on sidewalks where the 2m width was infringed upon.
- Many people noted the increase in the number of panhandlers in the area and some raised concerns about safety.
Staff tabled the document at the Nov. 17, 2021 Committee of the Whole meeting.