After nine months of waiting, the proposal for the Boston Public Market has been approved. The new farmers’ market will be located in Parcel 7, between North Station and the Financial District. It will provide direct access to Haymarket Station, which provides a direct connection to both the Green and Orange lines on the MBTA. The Boston Public Market will be the first permanent year-round farmers’ market in the Boston area.
The Boston Public Market will also be the first public market in the area to focus on locally-grown foods. Currently Boston is one of the few large cities in the United States that has yet to establish a local farmers’ market. The prospective market will feature items from local fishermen, farmers, ranchers, and wine makers from the New England area. It will provide residents in the area with food that is not only fresh, but also local. By providing this direct connection between the consumers and the vendors, the Boston Public Market aims to improve the lifestyle of the community around it as well as educate people about healthy eating and food sources.
“We seek to establish a civic institution in Boston that will support the local economy while providing fresh, healthy food options and educational opportunities to the community,” said Megan Gibbons, the seasonal markets manager of the Boston Public Market Association.
The project was not only inspired by the potential benefits for the community but also by the history of Boston itself. In constructing the new public market, the Boston Public Market Association hopes to revive the more traditional functions of Faneuil Hall from earlier in the city’s history.
There have already been multiple delays in construction due to logistical issues. The designated location of the Boston Public Market was originally designed to be a vent stack for the I-93 tunnel. There are also many renovations waiting for approval, such as covering up exposed pipes and wires in the ceiling where the market will be established, smoothing out the building’s uneven floor, and installing new water and electrical systems for the vendors.
Despite these issues, many people have continued to voice their support of the project. Governor Deval Patrick’s administration has already committed $4 million to the project, and the Henry P. Kendall Foundation in Boston has donated $1 million.
Many local farmers are also encouraged by the recent development in the project.
“I am more confident now than I was a few years ago,” Glenn Stillman, owner of Stillman’s Farm, told The Boston Globe. Having a public market in the heart of Boston will not only facilitate sales for these local farmers but also boost publicity throughout the general public.
Because the Boston Public Market Association is a non-profit company, it plans to raise the necessary funds before beginning construction. It intends to start construction this summer and finish the project by next spring. During that time, the association hopes to continue to operate different seasonal markets throughout the area. This spring, they plan to open a new seasonal market in front of the prospective home of the Boston Public Market.