Detroit, MI (1999-2007)
Client: City of Detroit
• Vision and management plan for market district’s future
• Capital improvement plan
• Design master plan
• Community outreach plan
The historic Eastern Market, a sprawling market district of open air sheds and adjacent food retail and wholesale businesses, is one of the largest public markets in the country.
The City of Detroit asked PPS to help them better understand the opportunities and potential for Eastern Market. Along with detailed operations analysis, PPS conducted detailed surveys and focus groups of shoppers, non-shoppers, and market businesses. Based on this assessment, PPS recommended a new non-profit organizational structure and a capital improvement plan for the market district to sustain the market’s energy and attraction into the 21st Century. PPS also helped to oversee a design master plan for the market.
The master plan called for broadening the Market as a place for local farm products including plants and flowers, and suggested adding retail product space to foster year round sales. The plan also recommended constructing an educational center and a new shed to allow the plant and flower growers to create a concentrated flower center. The non-profit Eastern Market Corporation was established in 2007 and is working to implement the plans for the Eastern Market District. A renovation of two historic sheds will be completed in 2009.
Working with the newly established Eastern Market Corporation in 2007, PPS developed a comprehensive outreach program to foster closer links with the Detroit community. The plan focused on strategies to increase and diversify the retail customer base, more effectively serving low income populations; retain and attract farmers; promote awareness of locally grown food and healthy lifestyles; create a gathering place to bring diverse people together; and strengthen links with wholesalers and buyers.