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C'ville Council Soliciting Proposals for City Market Space

December 16, 2013

Charlottesville City Council members unanimously voted to seek input from private developers for the site of the city market.

The city has been exploring possible changes to the popular weekend market for years.

One option being explored is moving it from its current location, a city-owned lot on Water Street, to Garrett Street.

Another possibility is enhancing the market at its current site, creating a mixed-use development.

Council voted at Monday's meeting to issue a Request for Proposal for the site, meaning they're seeking proposals and interest from private developers regarding what they would do with the piece of land.

"The idea is that we do want a high-quality streetscape and high-quality development, and it's got to be kind of front and center," council member Kathy Galvin said during the meeting.

The proposals must meet certain standards, like including the city market in its plans, creating a vertical, mixed-use development and maintaining a determined number of parking spaces, among other requirements.

"I'm not completely convinced that the development community is going to be able to come back with something that's really going to work," said council member Dave Norris. "But...I'm certainly willing to see."

Council is not locked into selecting any of the proposals that might come forward.

At an October 21 meeting, council expressed interest in continuing to pursue the Garrett Street option as well.

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