Victoria Park Market revival brings weekend stalls back
Victoria Park Market returns to its bohemian roots tomorrow.
The once thriving outdoor marketplace is welcoming back stallholders selling arts, crafts and street food to revive its empty courtyards and cobbled lanes.
The market will trade on Saturdays and Sundays from 10am to 4pm all year round.
It is a complete turnaround from what was proposed last year after a three-year $28 million refurbishment finished.
Developers were keen to establish the precinct as a hospitality and boutique shopping destination, distancing itself from its market moniker.
Tourists looking to spend a quick buck at stalls filled with knick-knacks were left confused by the makeover.
Wellington resident Deb Mills told the Auckland City Harbour News last year she was surprised to find the site without its arts, crafts and souvenir stalls.
Bayleys retail leasing specialist Leah La Hood, who has been charged with recreating the market, says those who loved the original marketplace will now recognise the same spirit within the revamped complex.
‘‘The people of Auckland loved Victoria Park Market during the height of its popularity in the 1980s and 90s,’’ she says.
‘‘We have retained the essence of what was the heart of this wellloved bohemian marketplace while interpreting it in a new and modern way.’’
Victoria Park Market needs to offer a point of difference to compete with Auckland’s many other markets, she says.
The stalls will run alongside the precinct’s stores and restaurants.
La Hood hopes this will grow foot traffic to benefit tenants.
The site was built in 1905 as a waste depot and incinerator complex before being transformed into a retail market in 1983.
It was bought by the Kitchener Group in 2003.
It continued to operate as a market until the refurbishment began in 2008.
Roll up: Victoria Park Market will now host up to 70 stalls on Saturdays and Sundays to revive the refurbished site.