Taupo¯ Market still in limbo
It has been more than 15 months, and still the Taupo¯ Market is unsure if it is staying at Riverside Park, Redoubt St or moving to the Northcroft Domain.
Market owners Monika and Hermann Geister say the uncertainty is preventing investment. Monika says the current location works well in winter with fewer visitors and vendors. But Taupo¯ District Council broached the idea of the market moving due to overcrowding in the summer, with over 100 stall holders. An additional issue is the vendors’ loss over two weekends in summer, when the market relocates to accommodate the Taupo¯ Summer Concert.
“Our stall owners are business people and while we are waiting they are being enticed by other markets around the Central North Island,” says Monika. Monika says that approximately 50 percent of the stall owners live in Taupo¯ and while there is tremendous support for the Taupo¯ Market, they are business people and if they get the opportunity to attend a oneoff summer market in another town, then they will take it to make connections with new customers.
“The Taupo¯ Market has established itself as a favourite market among the vendors, and we don’t want good vendors to move to other markets in the summer,” says Monika.
Monika and Hermann would like the Taupo¯ Market to be located on the Northcroft Domain during the summer, and shift back to Riverside Park in winter.
“Moving the market according to the seasons would give the grass a chance to recover, and it is quite a common thing for markets around the world to have two locations.”
The future location of the Taupo¯ Market was discussed at a closed full council meeting on Tuesday last week, with Monika saying the councillors apologised for the delay making a decision. However she is frustrated because they gave no indication of when they would give a response, and admits that dealing with council is not one of her strengths.
Council chief executive Gareth Green said that a working group has been formed and would be working with the market owners and discussing future options. Crs John Williamson, Christine Rankin and Rosie Harvey will be overseeing negotiations.
Monika says the market has had a fantastic winter, with mainly sunny Saturdays being great for business, and she says the councillors acknowledged that the market adds greatly to the vibrancy of Taupo¯ as a holiday destination.
“The market attracts 25,000 to 35,000 visitors each year, with the potential to grow, and the stall holders deserve some certainty about the future,” she says.
High visitor numbers to the Taupo¯ Market in the summer means the market has outgrown its current location at Riverside Park.