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Rebuilding Place in the Urban Space

"A community’s physical form, rather than its land uses, is its most intrinsic and enduring characteristic." [Katz, EPA] This blog focuses on place and placemaking and all that makes it work--historic preservation, urban design, transportation, asset-based community development, arts & cultural development, commercial district revitalization, tourism & destination development, and quality of life advocacy--along with doses of civic engagement and good governance watchdogging.

Friday, July 28, 2006

Florida Market Tour, Saturday July 29, 9 a.m.

Sam Wang's, Florida Market, DCSam Wang's Produce. Photo from the Washington Post, by Len Spoden.

The Capital City Market, more commonly known as the Florida Market, is the primary wholesale food distribution center in the city. A number of the businesses sell to retail customers. The cinder block "DC Farmers Market" building on Neal Street is comparable to Eastern Market, except it is privately owned, and less pretty.

The market area is under great development pressure because of its location and the attractiveness of the New York Avenue subway stop. The Office of Planning Cluster 23 Study proposes that the market be revitalized through a food-centered plan. An alternative proposal suggests demolishing everything and starting over. We're interested in showing people the assets that the market has to offer. The July issues of the Hill Rag and DC North had an article about the market and the issues involved.

On Saturday, Elise Bernard of the Frozen Tropics blog, and I will lead a free tour of the market. It will start at 9:00 a.m. at 4th and Morse Streets, NE.

We will visit one dozen places that sell retail, including the multi-vendor cinder block "Farmers Market" and the outdoor flea market, before finishing at Litteri's, which in my opinion, has the best Italian sub sandwich in the city (sorry Vace, sorry Mangialiardo's). We should finish up around 11 a.m.
D.C. Farmer's MarketThe market area is a lot more interesting than this photo might indicate. Flickr photo by EZRAW.

New developments. In the month since we've done the last tour, Young's Deli has closed because the landlord wants to sell the building. Councilmember Orange announced at a Mayoral candidates forum that he has entered legislation with 11 co-sponsors!!!!!!!!!!!! to proceed with the "New Towns" plan, which to go forward requires (1) hundreds of millions of dollars of city subsidies; and (2) eminent domain takings; because (3) the initiators of the New Towns "plan" only control 10% of the land.

Also see this feature from the Post food section, published in May, "The Insiders' Market: For International Finds, Those in the Know Shop at Capital City in the Warehouse District."

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