Downtown Pedestrian Mall Pilot Project

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The City of St. John's opened the Downtown Pedestrian Mall on July 3. The purpose of the Mall was twofold:

  1. to allow the business community to expand their space thereby stimulating the downtown economy, and
  2. as a means to allow people to use public space while adhering to required public health physical distancing guidelines stemming for the Covid 19 pandemic.

The Mall was open from July 3 to Sept. 7 with many businesses making changes to their outdoor spaces to accommodate increased foot traffic/patrons.

As this was a pilot project for the summer of 2020, it is important that staff determine whether the project goals above were met and make recommendations to Council on how a Downtown Pedestrian Mall could work for the future.

There are many stakeholders who will be consulted throughout this review process. This page is primarily designed to solicit feedback and perspective from consumers - people who visited the mall or those who chose not to visit the Mall. Take a few minutes to review the content on the page and provide your input.

Businesses in the Downtown will be consulted via survey and stakeholder meetings.

The City of St. John's opened the Downtown Pedestrian Mall on July 3. The purpose of the Mall was twofold:

  1. to allow the business community to expand their space thereby stimulating the downtown economy, and
  2. as a means to allow people to use public space while adhering to required public health physical distancing guidelines stemming for the Covid 19 pandemic.

The Mall was open from July 3 to Sept. 7 with many businesses making changes to their outdoor spaces to accommodate increased foot traffic/patrons.

As this was a pilot project for the summer of 2020, it is important that staff determine whether the project goals above were met and make recommendations to Council on how a Downtown Pedestrian Mall could work for the future.

There are many stakeholders who will be consulted throughout this review process. This page is primarily designed to solicit feedback and perspective from consumers - people who visited the mall or those who chose not to visit the Mall. Take a few minutes to review the content on the page and provide your input.

Businesses in the Downtown will be consulted via survey and stakeholder meetings.

Tell us about your experience using the Downtown Pedestrian Mall this year? Post your photo(s) and provide a brief description of how you used the Mall?

Thank you for sharing your story with us.

CLOSED: This discussion has concluded.

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    All year round Pedestrian Mall

    by lismarone, about 1 year ago

    This article makes me even more frustrated with our city. The Downtown Pedestrian Mall should not have closed. Where are our urban designers and planners? I had so much to say but I think this expert in this article says it all. Having lived in Asia for almost 2 decades, I have seen some amazing things around design and planning. Based on that, I do not accept that snow or cold should impede our small businesses. If the right heads are gathered together, we can thrive. It isn’t rocket science. Once again, those involved in decision making do not have... Continue reading

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    Great Summer City Vibes

    by Mary Devereaux, about 1 year ago

    It was an awesome summer downtown St. John’s with the Downtown Pedestrian Mall Pilot Project. The Mall made our downtown a more friendly, urban city. My family and friends spent much more time downtime during the day than they usually would and frequented many of the local downtown businesses. It was a great place to just drop by for a coffee, go out for lunch, people watch while having a tea/coffee/etc. Being able to meet up with friends and family in the outdoors is very important in these COVID times.

    We’d also recommend placing more of your colourful the tables... Continue reading

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    The Best Revival of Downtown In Years

    by Marygp, about 1 year ago

    LOVED the pedestrian mall. Walked it, ate at numerous restaurants, browsed and made purchases in stores I didn’t know were there. It made it enjoyable to go downtown again. Counteracted the rowdy stereotype of George St.


    it did not impact my Duckworth St shopping and eating - that felt more invigorated also. Please do it again next year ... pandemic or no pandemic. And find a way to keep outdoor patios through all downtown as long as proprietors want to have them

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    The pedestrian walk should be open all year round

    by Noah, about 1 year ago
    The pedestrian walk made the downtown centre feel much more safe, friendly, and enjoyable. This is crucial during the winter when lots of people walk! A plowed pedestrian walk could be a lovely year round public space, and similar ideas have been executed in other cities of the same climate (in particular snowfall) to much success!
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    The Pedestrian Walk as Our City Centre in the Summer AND Winter

    by gentlewatch, about 1 year ago

    See my full thoughts about the Pedestrian Walk here on the Telegram: https://www.thetelegram.com/opinion/local-perspectives/letter-let-the-good-times-stroll-in-st-johns-495787/


    The Pedestrian Walk is essential to St. John's as a place for tourists, communities, artists, vendors, performers, and businesses to congregate. It also discourages traffic which pollutes the ambience and the surrounding area with exhaust and noise. It is unnecessary and sends a wrong message to what we value as a city.

    I think the Pedestrian Walk should be open year-round. We should be embracing the winter by using the Pedestrian Walk to host Winter festivities (like Montreal does with having outdoor music festivals in February) and... Continue reading

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    Wonderful Idea!

    by MissPiggy, about 1 year ago
    My son and have only been living in the province for the last 2 years. Because of traffic and parking, I admit I didn't really take the time to shop downtown. By the time I would have driven around the block looking for parking, found one across the street, rolled back around, only to discover it was taken.... So I didn't bother. Skip forward to the pedestrian mall: we loved it!! We actually explored all the shops downtown, enjoyed the food, and would absolutely love to see it continue! I discovered shops I never knew existed, and which offered product... Continue reading
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    Continue doing this

    by bdh98, about 1 year ago
    I only made it down to the market a few times but I really enjoyed my time each time I did go. This is a great project for the City to invest in annually. Once covid restrictions will be lifted there will be many more people participating in the downtown area. Downtown felt alive and people were enjoying themselves on decks and walking around the space. Making the space pedestrian only was a great idea. I would grab a coffee and see what was on the go and I stopped in many of the shops. I would recommend that the... Continue reading
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    Great Initiative!

    by sej, about 1 year ago
    A great project that helped develop a sense of community for residents of the city. It created opportunities for all to interact with others....very family friendly, and hopefully helped local businesses prosper. It should be continued.
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    Loved it!

    by Heidi Williams, about 1 year ago

    Downtown was alive and family friendly! It was so wonderful! I wish it was continuing into the fall and Christmas!

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    Downtown Pedestrian Mall - excellent idea

    by Mark Balsom, about 1 year ago
    This was a awesome start to this event in record time during a pandemic. I love the idea and we visited the area several times over the summer. A suggestion maybe reduce speeds / temporary speed bumps and one way traffic for water and Duckworth streets in the future once water street opens up. Currently it doesn't seem to be safe for two way traffic on water street.
Page last updated: 23 March 2021, 14:44