"Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world.

Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has"

Margaret Mead, Anthropologist
(used with permission)

"If you don't like the news .... go out and make some of your own !!"

Wes "Scoop" Nisker, Newscaster


Government is a slow and tedious process. While it often includes citizen and neighborhood involvement, non-governmental, private organizations have created movements and interesting groups which can create positive change in our cities and towns.

I am fascinated by the way groups are created and how they influence public decision making. This blog merely recognizes them and forwards the description of these groups from their own websites.

Thursday, March 14, 2013

New Amsterdam Market

Location: New York, NY


New Amsterdam Market is held from 11am to 4pm on Sundays, at the old Fulton Fish Market in Lower Manhattan which is located on South Street between Beekman Street and Peck Slip.

New Amsterdam Market is a reinvention of the Public Market, once a prevalent institution in the City of New York. Revived for our present times and needs, New Amsterdam Market will incubate a new and growing economic sector: small businesses such as butchers, grocers, mongers, and other vendors who source, produce, distribute, and sell foods made with regional ingredients as well as carefully selected imports. We are also reintroducing and developing the concept of market fare prepared with regional, seasonal ingredients.

Our vision is to revive the historic Fulton Fish Market, a priceless public legacy that is owned by the people of New York and whose two market sheds have remained empty and unused since 2005. By bringing residents back to the Seaport, we are reviving the East River Market District --a rare fragment of our city's first port and oldest commercial neighborhood-- as a thriving, public destination for all New Yorkers.

New Amsterdam Market is currently held in the parking lot fronting the Fulton Fish Market New Market Building. This landmarked structure is the last riverfront market house built in the City of New York and was dedicated for public use by Mayor LaGuardia in 1939. The adjacent Tin Building has marked the site of the original Fulton Fish Market since 1831. Public markets have been held in this District since 1642.

In 1968, the Friends of South Street had the vision to preserve a priceless city landmark: the largely intact 19th century market district at the foot of the Brooklyn Bridge whose origins can be traced to 1642. Known today as the "South Street Seaport" this neighborhood includes two unique and irreplaceable riverfront market halls --the Tin Building (2)and New Market Building (3)-- empty since 2005 when the Fulton Fish Market was moved to the Bronx. That same year, New Amsterdam Market was launched with a mission to preserve and rehabilitate these two city-owned facilities, which remained threatened by inappropriate development proposals.

We envision the Fulton Fish Market redeveloped as a permanent, year-round, wholesale & retail distribution center dedicated to responsible agriculture, regional sourcing, and fair trade.

New Amsterdam Market will anchor a resilient, 21st century market district inspired by the fabled Les Halles of Paris (1), London's Borough Market (4) and American precedents such as Pike Place Market in Seattle and Ferry Plaza Market in San Francisco.

Our mission is made all the more relevant by the flood of October 29, which severely impacted the Lower Manhattan waterfront. A public market whose mission is the public interest, and not a suburban shopping mall, will lead this neighborhood's economic, civic, and cultural revival.

The highest and best use of any place emerges from the character of that place itself. The New Amsterdam Market District will emerge as a thriving destination by fostering and supporting numerous, varied, independent local businesses, and by ensuring that infrastructure and building uses evolve in concert with climate change and its effects.

To this end we are working with local merchants, government officials, and funders to form a community development corporation that will revitalize the District, improve the quality of public space, and maximize revenues for infrastructure maintenance.

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