This has become a chicken or the egg conversation. Should the city help attempt to revive a crappy few blocks of tourist garbage (for the most part) or should that onus fall on businesses?
I'm for the idea of the city stepping in to a certain extent. I think a great example of what we could aspire to is Pearl St Mall in Boulder, which is also quite touristy but had plenty of good shops as well.
Well I don't think you should gear up just for the tourists as a shop needs to survive year round, and that means support from the locals. Apart from the Provincial Museum, the inner harbour walkway and a handful of pubs and restaurants there is nothing to do downtown for the tourists, or for many of the locals for that matter.
I think that sending more traffic north along Wharf Street will just add to the congestion at the new bridge. But from the City's point of view that might be a good thing to show the tourists what not to do. On second thought maybe we need to funnel all the tourists from the cruise ships over that way this summer, and the boat shuttle could drop them off for a guided tour of the project.