Madison Public Market Foundation leads with development and operations planning


For many years, a vibrant and highly regarded public market has been the dream of entrepreneurs, community leaders and City of Madison employees.  To make this dream a reality, the community-led Madison Public Market Development Committee (MPMDC) ushered approvals through the Common Council, coordinated with City planning and economic development staff, and created a comprehensive business plan for the Market.

As plans proceeded, it became evident that the City’s role should be limited to critical matters related to the physical building of the Market including site selection, architectural design and construction. Their efforts, combined with the contributions of countless others, helped to create a timeline that calls for the opening of the Madison Public Market in Fall 2021.

Early in the planning process, it was determined that neither the MPMDC nor the City of Madison would be responsible for daily Market operations. The City’s primary role is to lead the renovation of the Fleet Services building (the Market’s future home) and maintain ownership of the building and land.

With that in mind, the Madison Public Market Foundation was created in May 2017. Operating as a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, the Foundation has already taken the lead in fundraising efforts and community engagement. When the Market is open, the Foundation will manage day-to-day operations. Until then, the Foundation will lead in vendor selection, the employee hiring process (including the Executive Director search), raise $4 million to create the Market, and work closely with the City on the architectural design so that the needs of vendors and tenants are met.

Recently, the Foundation hired Megan Ballard as Project Manager, charged with the task of implementing the Market’s operating plan. With a background in the commercial real estate industry, including managing and leasing shopping malls, Megan brings a wealth of experience critical to the operations of the proposed Madison Public Market. “I am so pleased to serve in this role”, says Ballard. “We have already made so much progress in terms of community outreach, in support of our MarketReady vendors, in fundraising activity and in creating innovative architectural designs for what will be an amazing asset for Madison and beyond.”

Ballard says that with the progress made towards building the market, this is a very exciting time. “Our next steps are those that prepare us for operationalizing the business plan in a manner that assures the Market’s financial success. Finalization of the architectural plans, including specifications for vendor siting, allows us to begin the process of selecting Market vendors. We’ve had tremendous interest expressed by local and regional businesses – both large and small. Very soon, we will develop both the rules and regulations for Market participation and define the leasing process.”

Business operators interested in opportunities at the Madison Public Market are encouraged to complete and submit the Madison Public Market Vendor Interest Form available from the City of Madison.

Board chair Jamaal Stricklin reviews design ideas from branding firm ZebradogThe look and feel of the Market is also a front-burner issue. The Foundation has engaged local communication design firm Zebradog (pictured right) to create a memorable and welcoming environment within the 50,000 square feet of the former Fleet Services Building. The Foundation will be responsible for selecting the building’s artwork, storytelling features and ongoing marketing and promotions for the Market, including regular community cultural events featuring area musicians, performers and artists.

Community engagement has long been a critical component of the Market’s development efforts, and the current status of the Market’s design incorporates thousands of public comments provided through surveys and public input sessions. The City of Madison has scheduled another Info & Public Feedback Session:

Thursday, September 5
6:00 pm
Madison Municipal Building, 215 Martin Luther King Blvd., RM 215
More Info Here

Attendees can view detailed designs of the proposed market, including the mix and layout of merchants at the market, event spaces, outdoor plazas, and potential community arts/exhibit spaces. There will be an update on pedestrian, bike and vehicle access and site design for what is currently the City’s Fleet Services Building at East Johnson Street and First Street.

The Foundation continues to update and engage with the community through Taste of the Madison Public Market events, active Facebook and Instagram pages, regular eUpdates, and presentations at Rotary, Kiwanis, Downtown Madison, Inc., and other forums.

 

The Madison Public Market Foundation Board members include:

  • Jamaal Stricklin (President), SuperCharge! Foods
  • Megan Ballard, Madison Commercial Real Estate
  • Sujhey Beisser, Park Bank & Five Senses Palate
  • Karen Crossley, community leader
  • Victoria Davis, Associated Bank
  • Rebecca Prochaska, Potter Lawson
  • Anne Reynolds, Madison Public Market Development Committee
  • Donale Richards
  • John Starkweather, Boardman Clark
  • Amanda White, Consultant (non-Board member)

Additionally, the Foundation created the Madison Public Market Advisory Council, consisting of community leaders who meet quarterly to provide guidance to the project. These members include:

  • Betty Banks, African American community historian and organizer
  • Craig Bartlett, Associate Publisher-Owner, Isthmus Publishing
  • Peter Cavi, First Vice President, Merrill Lynch
  • Al Cooper, Coordinator, Dane Dances
  • Suzanne Fanning, VP of Marketing Communications, Dairy Farmers of Wisconsin
  • Greg Frank, VP of Community Relations, Food Fight Restaurant Group
  • Peter Gray, Executive Search Consultant, QTI
  • Alison Helland, Attorney, Boardman & Clark
  • Jonny Hunter, Co-Founder, Underground Food Collective
  • Ken Monteleone, Owner, Fromagination
  • Melanie Ramey, Communication Coach and Speaker
  • Helen Sarakinos, Executive Director, REAP Food Group
  • Trey Sprinkman, Owner, Sprinkman Real Estate
  • James Shulkin, Windflower Consulting, Windworker Studio and Fishmonger Studio
  • Steve Suleski, VP Board Relations, CUNA Mutual Group
  • Missy Tracy, Municipal Relations Coordinator, Ho Chunk Nation/Ho Chunk Casino

Ballard is optimistic that with the most current building design plans, the brand identity developed by Zebradog, and the upcoming Info & Feedback session, the Foundation can intensify efforts to raise the requisite capital from donors. “With the expertise of Amanda White Consulting, we have already raised more than a million dollars of our four million dollar goal. Our capital campaign is just getting started, and I’m confident that once everyone knows the scope of our plans and sees the architectural renderings, they’ll come together to support this important project.”If you are interested in getting involved with the Public Market through participating in the Advisory Council, Board of Directors, or volunteer opportunities, please contact Megan Ballard at megan@madisonpublicmarket.org.

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James Shulkin is a communications professional and artist. He is the Principal at Windflower Marketing & Public Relations, Chief Kinetic Officer at Windworker Studio and creator at Fishmonger Studio. He’s also a member of the Madison Public Market’s Advisory Council.

 

The Madison Public Market:  The Next Stage in Promoting Local Food


Special thanks to our guest blogger, James Shulkin, member of the Madison Public Market Advisory Council!

Here in southern Wisconsin, we love our Farmers’ Markets! The Dane County Farmers Market located on the Capitol Square, is reportedly the largest producer-only farmers’ market in the country. While certainly the best known in the region, and a must visit at least a few times each season, this “jewel” of markets is supplemented by at least twenty farmers’ markets elsewhere in Madison and in communities like Baraboo, Beloit, Fitchburg, Fort Atkinson, Janesville, Middleton, Monona, Stoughton, Sun Prairie, Verona and Waunakee.

The proposed Madison Public Market will offer some of the same amenities as your local farmers’ market, plus more. A key difference between a Farmer’s Market and Public Market is that a Public Market is indoors, allowing it to be open year round, often 5-7 days per week. The City of Madison’s fleet services building at the corner of E. Johnson and First Street, will be home to our year-round Public Market, opening at the end of 2021. This retro space is a perfect Market home with 2 story ceilings and open space, floor to ceiling windows, several 2 story garage doors that will be open during the warm months, and a location near green spaces including Burr Jones Field, the Yahara River and several bike paths.

Rendering of Public Market Interior

According to Jamaal Stricklin, Chair of the Madison Public Market Foundation, a non-profit tasked with operating the Market once it opens, shared, “At the Public Market, you’ll find items that you can’t get anywhere else in town all under roof ; ready-made food products, fresh produce, unique food ingredients and culturally diverse foods cooked on site that you can take home or eat there. We’re also planning to have a restaurant and cafe on site.”

Like your local farmer’s market, the Public Market will provide a fun and interesting gathering place to meet friends and co-workers while enjoying talented musicians and performers. However, the Market will have other amenities in that it will house community activities, meeting spaces, art exhibits, full-service restaurants, cooking classes, festivals and temporary pop-up vending events. In addition, the Public Market will provide a seasonal cold-weather option for farmers’ market vendors looking to expand their selling season.

The Madison Public Market Foundation is hoping to partner with local farmers’ markets by offering outdoor market stands during the growing season. “We’ve also had conversations with the Dane County Farmers’ Market to potentially relocate the winter market to our event space,” shared Stricklin.

Ugly Apple food cart owner Laurel hands samples to a customer at May 2019 Sneak Peek EventAccording to Dan Kennelly, manager of the City of Madison’s Office of Business Resources, the Public Market’s main purpose is community based economic development. “We want the Public Market to be a place where an entrepreneur with a unique idea for a new food product, or a new business idea, can have a place where there will be foot traffic, where they can launch their business and bring that idea to reality,” adds Kennelly. “We expect that market participants who make an interesting sauce, or jam or some other kind of food product, can use the Public Market to develop a customer base and continue to grow into a brick and mortar location, or sell wholesale to grocery stores on a much larger basis.”

The Madison Public Market will also be an important part of the overall regional agriculture community. The synergies that will exist among agriculture-related companies, organizations that support entrepreneurs like those mentioned above, and the Public Market, will likely make Madison the best local food community in the country. One exciting partnership is with the Dairy Farmers of Wisconsin (DFW). DFW will host a Wisconsin Dairy Experience in the Market that will feature some of Wisconsin’s most beloved and delicious Wisconsin cheese vendors, cheese and dairy tastings, plus a fun, interactive experience that will foster our love of Wisconsin dairy! Suzanne Fanning, VP of Communications for Dairy Farmers of Wisconsin, shares, “We’re excited to create a destination within the Market for locals and visitors alike to celebrate the vast array of our state’s award-winning cheese and to honor the dairy farmers of Wisconsin.”

The concept that food-related endeavors are viable, actionable vehicles for entrepreneurship is already well established in the region. Southern Wisconsin boasts the largest agriculture employment base in the state. According to the Madison Region Economic Partnership, there are nearly 60,000 jobs directly related to agriculture, comprising 20% of Wisconsin’s total agricultural employment. Regional infrastructure supports food & beverage production, processing, packaging, and distribution.

Madame Chu owner Josey serves up samples of her sauceMadison’s unique food infrastructure, traditions, and facilities, all play a role in supporting and strengthening our food system. For example, the Dane County Farmers Market is a beloved weekly event focused on sales of local agricultural products, the FEED Kitchens provides flexible commercial cooking opportunities for entrepreneurs and community members, the Garver Feed Mill is a new home to growing, “second stage” food companies, and Madison College offers a array of culinary training programs and credentials. The Madison Public Market is designed to complement and build on Madison’s existing strengths and assets in the food economy.

Kennelly believes the Public Market will be Madison’s next treasured public place. He and others who envision the Public Market’s success see it as a destination for everyone, where you can purchase fresh vegetables and baked goods, stop in for lunch, or have dinner and late night drinks with friends.

After all, says Kennelly, “We are a food city.”

Design Planning Update


The City of Madison and the Public Market Design Team led by MSR Design are making steady progress on completing the site plan and floor plan for our Madison Public Market.

The first round of initial design concepts were released at our Sneak Peak celebration on May 8. Those designs can be found below. If you have questions or would like to provide comments on the design, please send them to info@madisonpublicmarket.org.

The next round of design plans will be available towards the end of July for your input, ideas and inspiration. The City is looking to host a public information meeting at the beginning of August, so that our community has a chance to be involved in the final stage of the design planning. We’ll send out an announcement as soon as that date is confirmed.

If you have questions or would like to provide comments on the design, please send them to info@madisonpublicmarket.org.

Madison Public Market Initial Design Concepts

Existing Site

 

 

Proposed Site Access

 

MPM Floor Plan Concept
Proposed Floor Plan Concept

 

Areas surrounding the Madison Public Market (top left: bike path crossing over the Yahara River, top right: Yahara River, bottom left: Burr Jones Field, bottom right: Burr Jones Park basketball court)

If you have questions or would like to provide comments on the design, please send them to info@madisonpublicmarket.org.

Welcome Our New Project Manager, Megan Ballard


The Madison Public Market Foundation is pleased to welcome Megan Ballard as our new Project Manager. Megan previously served as the Treasurer of the Board.

A Message from Megan

After serving as the Treasurer for the Madison Public Market Foundation, I am excited to shift into the role of Project Manager for the Board of Directors. In my new role, I will work with the Board to facilitate completion of multiple projects as we prepare to break ground on the Madison Public Market in 2020. I will also take an active role in community outreach and engagement as the dream of our public market becomes a reality.

While the City of Madison works diligently to finalize construction plans, I will be working with the Foundation Board to implement its operating plan. I am building relationships with public market operators across the country, recently completing tours of NewBo Market in Cedar Rapids, IA, Logan Street Market in Louisville, KY and Findlay Market in Cincinnati, OH. We’ve gathered amazing insights from our peers as we begin to define our vendor selection process. Other key initiatives we are working on this summer include developing and implementing a brand strategy; securing public art for the project; and continuing to grow the capacity and operations of the Madison Public Market Foundation (future operator of the Market) in preparation for opening in 2021.

In addition to working with the Madison Public Market, I recently joined Madison Commercial Real Estate as a Sales Associate specializing in retail brokerage services. Prior to joining MCRE, most of my career has been spent in the commercial real estate industry, managing and leasing shopping malls.

I am originally from Iowa, relocating to Madison from Minneapolis in 2016. I’m an active member of Downtown Rotary and Downtown Madison Inc. I enjoy living on the Isthmus and taking in everything our beautiful City has to offer.

Thank you to all the dedicated individuals and organizations that have worked tirelessly on the project and to our donors and supporters. We would not be here without you! The Madison Public Market will be an amazing asset to our community and I could not be more thrilled to join the team!

If you have any questions or concerns, please don’t hesitate to reach out at
megan@madisonpublicmarket.org.

Badger Herald: MarketReady program supports diversity among entrepreneurs


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When Josie Chu’s mother passed away and Chu inherited her cookbooks, she had no idea that an old recipe for sauce tucked in the back pages would soon become an entire business.

Chu now owns the condiment company Madame Chu Delicacies, and like many other entrepreneurs in Madison, has faced various barriers while building her business. But programs like The Food Enterprise and Economic Development Kitchen and MarketReady have given her the tools to navigate such obstacles.

FEED and MarketReady are both part of several organizations that work to support populations that face historic barriers to entrepreneurship.

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Common Council Approves Collaboration, Design Team


On Tuesday, the City of Madison Common Council made significant progress in moving forward the development of the Madison Public Market. In three resolutions sponsored by alders Larry Palm, Amanda Hall, and Marsha Rummel, the Council approved the Collaboration Agreement with the Madison Public Market Foundation and city staff’s recommendation for architect and engineering design services.

In approving the Collaboration Agreement with the Madison Public Market Foundation, the City officially empowers the Foundation to select vendors to operate within the Public Market, hire staff to operate the Market, advise and provide input on the final design, and secure funds to ensure the successful launch of the Market. Along with these responsibilities, the City grants the Foundation seed funding to move forward with a complete operating agreement.

“We are excited to launch into this next phase of the Public Market development in an official collaborative capacity with the City of Madison,” said Jamaal Stricklin, President of the Board of the Madison Public Market Foundation. “With the selection of the architecture team and the collaboration agreement in place, we can see some real forward progress toward opening the doors of the Market in 2021.”

In October 2018, after reviewing 11 proposals from Madison and around the country, City staff put forth a recommendation to the Common Council to engage an architecture and engineering team led by Minneapolis-based Meyer, Scherer & Rockcastle (MSR) to complete the design of the Madison Public Market building. With Tuesday’s approval by the Common Council, MSR can start the design process for the site at the corner of First Street and E. Johnson Street.

This development marks a significant milestone in making the Madison Public Market a community-driven, inclusive destination for the Madison region. You can be part of the initial momentum with a gift today.

Wisconsin State Journal: Madison officials embrace Fleet Services building for Public Market


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December 4, 2018

With land costs too high to put a $13.2 million Madison Public Market on East Washington Avenue, city officials are embracing an option to reuse the nearby city Fleet Services building for the market.

Mayor Paul Soglin announced Monday that the city is dropping its bid to acquire land to build the market as part of a coming private redevelopment of the Washington Square shopping center at the corner of First Street and East Washington.

“A decision like this is a 100-year decision,” Soglin said at a press conference at the Fleet Services building Monday morning. “It’s very important we get it right.”

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City of Madison Mayor Soglin Announces Public Market Plans for Fleet Services Building


Today, Madison Mayor Paul Soglin will officially announce an update about the future home of the Madison Public Market. The location of the Public Market will continue to stay at the same overall near east side location, but the Market building site will shift over 250 feet from the corner of First Street and East Washington to the adjacent City-owned Fleet Services property at the corner of First Street and E. Johnson St.

Previously, the City had been engaged in ongoing conversations with the owners of the Washington Plaza Shopping Center to locate the Market within their private development. Now that the Fleet Services Division has a plan and budget authority to relocate to a new facility, Mayor Soglin and his team believe the soon-to-be vacated Fleet Services building is a much stronger fit for achieving our community’s vision for the Public Market.

“I’m happy to share another important step forward in our Madison Public Market project. This refocus toward utilizing an existing City asset is exactly what we need to develop a Public Market that will support community-based economic development and become one of the most treasured and visited destinations in Madison,” said Madison Mayor Paul Soglin. “The change better enables us to build the dynamic, diverse Public Market that our community wants and deserves.”

Mayor Soglin highlights the following benefits to locating the Market within Fleet Services building (existing space pictured right):

  • Same overall location: Because it’s the same overall location, all work done so far including site analysis, fundraising, and the MarketReady program will be consistent and unchanged.
  • 60% larger space: The Fleet Services building is 45,000 square feet, compared to 28,000 square feet in the previous Shopping Center redevelopment. The larger space will enable us to better meet the overwhelming response by interested vendors (nearly 200 entrepreneurs have submitted formal interest), in addition to better achieving our plans for the Food Innovation Center at the Market, a regional food hub to expand local food distribution, processing, and other important systems needed to better meet the demand for local food across the County.
  • 4 times the lot size: Fleet Services is on 3.5 acres, offering much more space to build the outdoor plaza, including outdoor seating, a performance stage, and perhaps food cart areas. The Market will still be connected to Burr Jones Field and the Yahara River.
  • Sound/unique building: The building is well-suited to conversion to a public market with lots of potential character (large clear-span areas, mezzanine level, etc,)
  • Added car and bike parking: We’ll have room for significantly more parking.
  • More accessible for large delivery trucks and traffic flow: Being located off of the corner of E. Johnson instead of E. Washington, makes more a much imporoved traffic flow for large and small vehicles alike.
  • Sustainability: Reusing an existing building is more sustainable than building new and the flat roof allows for consideration of green roof options.

The Mayor adds that the owners of the adjacent shopping center can move forward with their redevelopment project independently but still integrated with the market. This project continues to move forward with housing, retail, and potentially a hotel. The private development will continue to be a huge asset for supporting the health of the Market.

The budget for the Market at Fleet Services is expected to remain consistent with the City’s approved $13 million budget that was reauthorized in the 2019 capital budget. Recently Minneapolis-based architect MSR along with local firms Ken Saiki Design and Vierbicher were recommended by the City staff as the project’s design team. MSR is a great fit for the project as they have strong experience in retrofit projects, such as Madison’s Central Library and the Madison Municipal Building.

As the future operator of the Market, the Madison Public Market Foundation has already raised nearly $1 million of the $4 million private capital needed to fund the project. Madison Public Market Foundation President Jamaal Stricklin shares that the Foundation is optimistic about the Fleet Services location. “The funders that we’ve shared this news with see the positive attributes of this change and continue to be excited and supportive of our progress on creating our Public Market. The Foundation believes that the shift over to Fleet Services has wonderful potential for better achieving many of our diversity, sustainability, and local food economy goals. We’re eager to move forward on making our Public Market a reality.”

The updated timeline for the project will become more precise once the design process commences and Fleet Services begins construction at their new site.  Current estimates are that Fleet Services will move to their new facility in 2020, allowing the renovation for the Public Market to be completed in 2021. For now, all key stakeholders including the City of Madison, Madison Public Market Foundation, and current private project funders are all in agreement that this project will continue to make strong, forward progress.

 

For more information, please contact Dan Kennelly at 608-267-1968

MarketReady 2018: By the Numbers and the People Behind the Numbers


Special thanks to our guest blogger, James Shulkin, member of the Madison Public Market Advisory Council!

It’s been just over a year since the inception of the MarketReady Program, an effort to prepare a number of talented chefs, makers and other entrepreneurs with the skills needed to create successful businesses. Funded by the City of Madison and launched in partnership with North Side Planning Council, FEED Kitchens, Wisconsin Women’s Business Initiative Corporation and Dane County University of Wisconsin Extension, MarketReady provides business training, mentorship, and start-up capital ($37,500 in 2018) to a diverse group of thirty area merchants. The goal has always been that, with the right kind of encouragement, these individuals might some day become successful vendors at the highly anticipated Madison Public Market.

As 2018 comes to a close, we look back on the resounding success of both the MarketReady Program and the individuals that have contributed so much to these efforts.

The MarketReady vendors are a special group. They are mostly women (63%) and people of color (83%). Thirty three percent (33%) are first generation immigrants. In fact, MarketReady focuses on supporting communities that face structural barriers to business ownership. Specifically, the program was created to Encourage and stimulate the creation and acceleration of businesses owned and operated by women, persons of color, the economically disadvantaged and others in need of a new career path.

The majority of these businesses offer food products, with some selling textiles, artwork, body care products or other services. You may be familiar with some of the more visible vendors such as Laurel Burleson (Ugly Apple Café), Josey Chu (Madame Chu), Luis Dompablo (Caracas Empanadas), Jasmine Banks (Perfect Imperfections), Donale Richards (Off the Block Enterprises) and Monica O’Conell (Curtis & Cake), to name a few. All of the MarketReady merchants can be found here.

Led by Ian Aley, MarketReady Coordinator, and Michael Miller, City of Madison Business Assistance Specialist, the organization’s staff provides and arranges for training of all kinds, providing financial services, technical assistance, referrals and access to micro-grants.

“The MarketReady staff and I are humbled and inspired by the group’s hard work, sense of humor, and willingness to share ideas,” says Aley. “We facilitate connections, but so much of the creativity, experience, and strength comes from within this group of entrepreneurs.”

During the first year of the MarketReady program, direct services to the vendors included:

  • educational events and workshops (1,046 hours)
  • direct business consultation (585 hours)
  • business coaching (181 hours)
  • peer-to-peer support sessions (29)

Partnerships with the University of Wisconsin Law & Entrepreneurship Clinic, the law firm Boardman & Clark and Heartland Credit Union have provided consultation and coaching to participants.

The MarketReady vendors have also given back to the community, including directly to those future Public Market visitors particularly anxious to sample product offerings. To date, more than 2,000 people have attended three “Taste of the Market” events featuring many of the vendors. In addition, 14 MarketReady participants offered 37 classes at Meadowridge Public Library, providing an opportunity to test recipes, make sales, and connect with neighbors across the city.

“We look forward to the opening of the Public Market,” adds Aley. “In the meantime, this community of vendors will continue to develop new product lines, hone their business plans, and build relationships with customers and each other. There is a strong sense in the group that the success of one business in the Public Market will be tied to the success of their neighbors. We will continue to build capacity and connections. When the Public Market opens, we will be ready.”

Wisconsin State Journal: Major gifts launch fundraising drive for Madison Public Market


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November 1, 2018. Donors have ignited a private fundraising campaign for the coming $13.2 million Madison Public Market on the East Side, pledging contributions totaling nearly $1 million for the project.

The law firm Boardman Clark is delivering a lead gift of $250,000, while Dairy Farmers of Wisconsin is providing another contribution to create an interactive space within the market highlighting dairy and the state’s rich heritage of cheesemaking.

Those gifts and a few others have the nonprofit Madison Public Market Foundation closing in on the first $1 million of an effort to privately raise $4 million for the project, which will be part of a larger redevelopment slated for land bounded by East Washington Avenue, North First Street and Burr Jones Park.

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