An artist's sketch of a more family-friendly George Street. ((City of St. John's))

The city of St. John's will reveal in September its plan to make George Street, its famous bar district, a more family-friendly downtown centre.

The street is known for its wall to wall nightclubs and pubs, as well as yearly festivals such as Mardi Gras in October and the summertime George Street Festival.

Revelry on the street, as people make their way from bar to bar and home again, has often prompted late-night noise complaints from downtown residential neighbourhoods. Litter that accumulates at night and remains on the street under the harsh light of day has also been a concern.

Officials with the city of St. John's said they want to give George Street a family-friendly makeover. Ken O'Brien, manager of planning with the city, said the concept is to turn the street into an outdoor experience.

"[We have] different ideas to make it more friendly throughout the day, as well as into the evening," O'Brien said.


George Street in downtown St. John's in its current form. ((CBC))

Artists' sketches of a new George Street include new pavement, more patios and a farmers market.

Tourists not sold

Tony Pasula, a tourist from Calgary, said he heard about George Street's reputation long before he arrived in St. John's, and he couldn't wait to visit it. Having finally experienced it, he said he's not sure an overhaul is the way to go.

"I sure like what I see right now," he said. "And I think sprucing it up too much might take away from what it is."

The city of St. John's is scheduled to hold a public meeting on Sept. 23 to unveil the proposed changes and hear input.