In one of tne of the feature stories at Project for Public Spaces entitled Public Markets Conference Sets New Agenda for Communities and Local Economies, Central Market is presented as a "perfect example" of markets as community anchors. Here's an excerpt from the article
In the workshop session about “Markets as Community Anchors,” moderator (and sailor) Oran Hesterman of the Fair Food Network talked about what an “anchor” really does: it doesn’t keep the boat in one location, but it does allow the boat to drift in a controlled manner. Markets that are community anchors are like this as well: they provide a way to bring people together, anchoring a community around food and place, but they are always “shifting” and evolving, just as a community shifts and evolves.
One of presentations at this session provided a perfect example. A group of African immigrants from Winnipeg, Canada, started a market in an underused park in downtown to provide an anchor for the traditions and culture they have brought with them to their new home. “A few years ago, nobody went to Central Park—it was all police,” explained Othello Wesse from the Central Market for Global Families. “We started imagining the possibility of people coming together from different backgrounds--and that’s how the market started.”
Now, the market gathers vendors from Africa, Asia and the Americas to sell food, music and handicrafts. People from throughout the city attend the market on a regular basis, attracted not only by its diverse offerings but also by its warm sense of community. Said Wesse, “The market is there to bring hope and family together.”
Whole article here. Click on 'read more'