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Tommy Joins Mayor Fenty in Market Update PDF Print E-mail
Written by Charles Allen   
Thursday, 02 August 2007
Councilmember Wells joined Mayor Fenty and other officials this morning at Eastern Market to announce the completion of construction on the temporary building to house merchants displaced by the devastating fire. Mayor Fenty announced that the merchants are expected to move into the temporary structure on August 18th and also that there will be a grand opening with merchants ready for business on August 25th.   District government officials have worked directly with merchants and neighborhood and community organizations to ensure merchants’ needs are met both during the transition period and then also once they are in the temporary structure. “Few things have ever galvanized our community more than the threat to our historic Eastern Market,” said Councilmember Wells. He added, “My colleagues on the Council have been very supportive and recognize that Eastern Market is an amenity that belongs to our whole city.”

Construction on the temporary building began with subsurface utility work in early May which was followed by the pouring of the concrete slab followed quickly by erection of the temporary structure, which was up within approximately one week.   Lighting in the $2.6 million temporary structure is complete and the remaining wiring and plumbing is expected to be complete by next week.  “The timing and speed with which the city has moved to get this structure up is unprecedented,” said Councilmember Wells.  He added, “Any criticism of delay is like telling the superhero Flash that he is running late.  I wish all city action could move as quickly as this project.”

When renovations are complete the original Eastern Market building will have upgrades such as new floors, windows, bathrooms, HVAC system, additional restrooms, will be in ADA compliance and will have a new sprinkler system.  Careful ordering by the City has allowed for most of the fixtures and equipment in the temporary structure to be available for use in the renovated building. When complete, “The newly renovated Eastern Market structure will have the same feel but with needed updates and structural repairs,” commented Councilmember Wells.

The Mayor said that no plans have been made yet with regard to future uses of the temporary structure, which is city property, once the merchants have moved back into the Eastern Market building.  He noted though, that the structure will not remain on the Hine, Jr. High site and that it will be recycled for other purposes. 
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