CLEVELAND, Ohio (WOIO) - There’s an old saying when it comes to investing, “You have to spend money, to make money.”
Vendors of the West Side Market, along with patrons, all agree that when it comes to investing in the century-old market, the city of Cleveland hasn’t done much. On Tuesday, all parties, including the man responsible for overseeing the market, came together to talk about it.
Nearly 200 people packed the basement area of Market Garden Brewery for a town hall meeting to discuss everything from plans, to solutions to keep the landmark alive and well.
Several key leaders were apart of a panel discussion, including Chief Operating Officer for Cleveland, Darnell Brown, Ward 3 Councilman Kerry McCormack and West Side Market Tenants Association President, Don Whitaker.
In the last few years, the West Side Market has seen a decline in vendors. The market is currently down 30% of vendors and 50% with produce vendors.
Just last month, two prominent vendors walked away in Sebastian’s Meats and Turczyk Meats. They say they departed due to poor management by Cleveland, along with rising rent costs.
Members of the vendor community say the city should let a non-profit run the market. But Darnell Brown disagrees.
Brown said, “I’m willing to do due diligence to figure out whether or not that is the best opportunity or ours, or some other possible solution.”
Don Whitaker responded, saying the city is making a lot of plans, with no action.