Cleveland’s historic West Side Market is an incubator for over 100 locally-owned food businesses

We’re excited to announce that Cleveland has been selected to host the 8th International Public Markets Conference.

The 3-day event, planned for September or October of 2012, will bring together over 300 participants including noted planners and designers, accomplished market managers, and visionary leaders in a unique opportunity to focus together on the past, present and future of markets worldwide.

Exact dates and locations will be announced this autumn. For more information, please contact Kelly Verel at kverel@pps.org.

Why Cleveland?

One of 20 cities to compete for the chance to host the conference, Cleveland has been selected from a group of five finalists including London, England; Toronto, Ontario; Seattle, Washington and Charleston, South Carolina.

The conference will align with the City’s celebration of the centennial year of the historic West Side Market. “Cleveland should be proud of the longevity of the West Side Market – one of the few remaining historic public markets in the U.S,” says PPS Senior Vice President Steve Davies, “and conference participants will also learn a great deal from the region’s expanding farmers markets which are sparking revitalization, job growth and healthy living.”

Cleveland and the Market were singled out by the Travel Channel as the best culinary secret in America, and the West Side Market was named by the Food Network  as the “Best Food Lover’s Market”  in the country in September of 2010. Even Travel and Leisure Magazine says “Cleveland shines brightly on the map of new American food destinations” and highlights the Market as a must-see destination.  The American Planning Association designated the market as one of America’s “10 Great Public Spaces,” and it is on the National Register of Historic Places.

The exterior of Cleveland’s historic West Side Market, circa 1912

City leaders in Cleveland have become known as champions for local food, urban agriculture and healthy living, passing legislation to allow backyard chickens and bees, leading the country in vacant land reuse and urban agriculture. As recently as this month, they joined forces with local hospitals to tackle city-wide health through healthy eating.

PPS will co-host the conference with the Ohio City Near West Development Corporation as the organization dedicated to developing, preserving, and promoting Ohio City, the neighborhood anchored by the West Side Market.

Cleveland’s local press has enthusiastic coverage of the announcement:

Check out the proceedings from the last International Public Markets Conference in San Francisco and download free podcasts here.

Want to learn about the keys to creating a great market? Come to PPS 2011 Spring Training course, “How to Create a Successful Market” in New York City, May 20-21.