When the McEwen School of Architecture took hold of their downtown location, they booted the longstanding farmers’ market, located in the wooden CP Rail building.
While I readily agree with the decision of putting the architecture school downtown, I certainly miss the experience I had as a child, going to the market with my mom, getting some sweets and perhaps watching a show at the small stage.
The farmers’ market is now using tents, intermittently on Thursdays at Science North and at the old train station on Elgin Street.
It does not seem to me that either of these locations is adequate for their purposes or for the needs of a community. The market has survived the loss of a building, yet the situation is shameful! Is it not a point of pride to be able to support local farmers and food suppliers?
Not to mention that the quality is better than what you would find at a supermarket or at Costco.
Many similarly-sized cities in Canada have dedicated farmers’ markets.
If Moncton, a city with a rough population of 75,000 residents, can support a well-furnished and popular market in their downtown, why can’t Sudbury?
The increasing popularity of locally-sourced, homemade goods and artisanal crafts makes for an excellent atmosphere in which to dedicate a space which can support local farmers and artisans and foster a strong, tight-knit community.
Coming back to Moncton, I believe that it is an excellent case-study and presents an attractive model we can follow.
Notable factors to its design include: a dedicated food court, densely-packed artisanal stalls, lots of room for farmers to display their goods, and it’s all located centrally downtown with easy access to parking. Fostering and supporting our community should be taken much more seriously than it is.
Take the farmer, the baker, the butcher, and the maker out of their tents and give them space to flourish.