Sunday 17 November 2013

More Public Comments On Renewal

Following are some more extracts from the CoM website that invites the public to comment on QVM renewal. You can make your own comment by going to -

Adllara 08 Nov 2013, 10:06 Pm
As a single parent with 4 kids, I go to the market to do my weekly shopping. The fear that this whole 'renewal' thing will ruin a fresh and relatively inexpensive market is worrying. All I can see is the councils desire to make it 'trendy' and what follows that is expensive. Its a food and produce market, not a trendy coffee place to relax on the weekend.

Market Trader 10 Nov 2013, 06:19 Pm
The core ingredients for successful public markets are quality, value and personal service. Value is closely related to the cost of doing business and the QVM model does allow low cost retailing (some traders may disagree). That low cost model must be retained if we are to avoid some of the disasters overseas where “gentrification” has resulted in higher retailing costs as well as a loss of “market feel”. There are aspects we can improve on. In 2013 it is difficult to understand why most traders don’t have electricity. Running water would seem to be an essential for Fruit & Vege traders but are expensive cooling facilities really necessary?
Maybe we can add another ingredient to the quality, value, personal service trio and that is convenience. Modern living does make us time poor. A key objective may be to introduce easier ways for customers to find what they want, when they want it (more flexible trading hours) and then getting it home efficiently. This applies whether you are a local, interstate or even international shopper. One of the main attractions for online shopping is the convenience factor and modern public markets need to recognise convenience as a modern essential.
There are many aspects of 20th Century markets that remain attractive today, but choosing what needs to be added for modern living, without increasing costs (and prices) is now the challenge at QVM. 

BenK 03 Nov 2013, 02:45 Pm
I agree with what most people have said so far in terms of making sure we keep the market viable as a place to do "real" shopping. One of the things that I think makes the market "real" in this sense is the variety of food you can buy. By this I don't just mean different cheeses or different meats, but also the different varieties of the same foods. If you want to the crispest of tomatoes for a salad, you can buy those at the market. But if you want some over-ripe tomatoes for a tomato sauce you can buy those too. I would hate for the market to lose this "realness" and become only a seller of "premium" foods.
I can see where Market Trader is coming from in terms of the need for car spaces, but I don't really agree with her/him. As a resident of the municipality I would like to see the Council do everything it can to encourage people to use public transport in order to reduce congestion and pollution within the municipality. There are four tram routes that go past the market and two nearby train stations, and anything you can fit into a market trolley you can take with you on the tram or train. Anyway, road congestion is only going to get worse as the city's population increases, so it may not be sustainable to rely on car traffic for the market's future viability.
As others have said, some later trading hours would be good.
Also, like others making comments, I think that the non-food section of the market needs looking at. As has been said, more variety would be good. I'd like to see some space given over to stalls for makers of quality designer crafts/clothes. There's a bit of a trend for pop-up shops these days and maybe the market can tap into this by having cheap, flexible space available for young crafty types to take a low-risk punt on setting up shop.
Lastly, I agree with kellyhertzog that the market revamp would be a great opportunity to green up the market, both in terms of having more green space and incorporating environmentally friendly infrastructure/programs. 

Miriam Faine 12 Nov 2013, 10:28 Pm
My family's weekly trip to the market contributes to our amenity in many ways as it does for other Melbournians and I am concerned that to date we customers have had no input into the plans for the market's future.
A really important thing about the market is that it is a profoundly democratic space, one of the declining number of public spaces where a whole range of very different people can not only mingle, but share a common purpose.
If the market is deteriorating, it is because its management has no understanding of or sympathy for what is the essence of a market - competition (low prices), choice and freshness. Since ?early 2000s food traders were permitted to purchase and trade licences. This has led to some traders buying out others, thus reducing competition and leading to price fixing across the market. Because fresh produce traders now own more than one stall, they operate on a large scale. Hence the pressure to install freezers and cool stores, increase trading days etc. Basically this will turn the market into a supermarket with little choice of vendor, food being stored on site and consequence loss of freshness (which the reason the market traditionally only operated some days).
All proposed changes will cost a fortune, so the trade off is to develop part of the market site for high rise and put the parking underground. But the current car park is sacred ground (over Melbourne's earliest cemetery) plus there are ideas for a grand plaza. So the plaza goes on the carpark, other land is promised to developers, and what is left of the market is 'upgraded' - reduced, refurbished and wrecked as a functioning food market. Mr Doyle thinks a 'win win' but I think a sad thing for the popular culture and heritage of Melbourne.

Andrew In NM 15 Nov 2013, 10:31 Pm
Please do not forget the customers. As can be seen from the majority of comments here, it is the customers who sustain the market. We do not want the interests of the more wealthy food traders to obtain a monopoly or even a larger share of the market than they already have. If that is allowed to happen we can all throw away our trolleys and go to the supermarkets because that will be all that's left.
If we continue to play to the markets strengths (which are many and varied) it will succeed. It is unique, for it's locale, size, history and culture. Ensuring that it maintains and enhances these things is not difficult if our motives are transparent. I think some basic things would grow the patronage. Namely some more seating areas and more scope for art and music and perhaps this would encourage more people to eat at the market as well.
Increasing numbers will live near the market and if it caters to them it will thrive.

Lapchick 16 Nov 2013, 08:11 Am

Please do not forget the residents! Please clean the streets surrounding the market area, in particular, Cobden and O'Connell Streets. The market area is cleaned after the market finishes, however a vast amount of rubbish, boxes and general waste is strewn in our streets and is left in place for the weekend. Victoria St, close to the market area, is also a huge mess during the weekend. Our visitors could easily mistake the area for downtown Calcutta on market days and indeed on other days. The cleaning companies should extend their area of operations. Please think of the residents and also of the impression the litter makes on tourists of all description. It is not just the market that needs cleaning, it is our adjacent streets.