Momentum for James Beard Market in Portland

Momentum for James Beard Market in Portland

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by Joe Smith, KGW business reporter

kgw.com

Posted on September 27, 2013 at 4:56 PM

Updated Friday, Sep 27 at 7:57 PM

PORTLAND -- It's been in the works for 13 years, but now there is new momentum to create Portland’s own year-round indoor/outdoor market.

The James Beard Market project is now asking the community to get involved. The whole idea behind the market is to pay tribute to Portland's James Beard who is considered the father of American cooking.

It’s been a long journey from idea to a closer reality. The spot on the west end of the Morrison Bridge will be home to two market halls, housing some 50 to 60 permanent food vendors with space for others to showcase all of Oregon’s bounty.

Melvin Marks development company is purchasing the surplus land from Multnomah County for $10 million. It's part of an over-all project to revitalize the area down to the waterfront.

“We scoured the city and found this city and decided to pursue the acquisition of it, and it’s taken us three years to get the contract,” said Dan Petrushich, president of Melvin Mark.

“Portland has had a rich history of public markets…this region was the mercantile center of Portland, said Ron Paul, executive director of the James Beard Public Market.

Part of the grand plan for the area is to also include a new 235-foot hotel or office tower.

The idea is to extend Portland’s shopping area down to the Willamette River.

Ground is expected to be broken in about three years and on Friday there is a sold out fund raiser to raise awareness and funds for the project.

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