Earlier Closing Time Approved for Downtown RI Bars
Closing time for bars in downtown Rock Island will soon move up one hour, from 3 am until 2 am. That was the decision Monday night by the city council that also decided not to make the change permanent, instead it will be in effect until the end of February.
Mayor Mike Thoms says the temporary change will give city leaders time to implement re-vitalization plans for downtown and its Arts and Entertainment District.
"There's no doubt that everybody's consensus is that they want the downtown to be more family oriented, whether it be during the day or early evening. And so they want to strive for that I'll call the first priority. And then as the night gets later, you can turn it into more adult entertainment but we don't want that part to scare away the family oriented part earlier."
Thoms says studies have already been done on how to improve the District, now it's just a question of implementing the changes that have been recommended.
And he says the choice of February 28th to restore the 3 am closing time is a compromise between those who wanted restore it at the end of December versus those who thought it should remain at 2 am until the spring when liquor licenses in Rock Island are renewed each year.