Montreal is seeking to refurbish the Old Port ahead of the city's 375th anniversary next year, and is turning to the public for ideas.

Several hundred people gathered at the Montreal Science Centre on Thursday night in the first in a series of public consultations.

Among the ideas that were floated was a plan to turn the old Silo No.5 into an urban farm, and special water treatment units to allow swimming in the river.

City planners will review the ideas and reveal a strategy for the Old Port in the fall.

Mayor Denis Coderre wants a master plan finalized by 2017. He has already announced a $5 million project to upgrade Place Jacques Cartier.

An estimated six million people visit the Old Port every year, making it one of the most popular tourist sites in Quebec.