I too am reserving judgement on this new design until more detailed renderings are available. First impressions are that I think the plaza connection to the existing River Landing public space is an improvement. I did like the 'curved design' in the original design, but as mentioned, will hold judgement on this one until more details (finishes, etc.)
What this overall project and area needs, however, is increased opportunity to dine, lounge, have a few drinks while being able to take in the vista of the river valley. It is incredible to me that Saskatoon is devoid of these opportunites given the natural gem that we are so lucky to have with our river valley.
Looking forward to council approval and shovels in the ground by spring of 2012.