Wednesday, August 05, 2009

Outdoor Market Coming to Silver Spring

Silver Spring will soon have its own Eastern-Market-style street market, the Fenton Street Market. With two inaugural weekends this fall (September 12th and October 3rd) the market will be open every Saturday, beginning Spring of 2010. The Market owes its existence largely to Hannah McCann, a Silver Spring resident of 12 years who saw the empty lot on the busy corner of Fenton St. and Silver Spring Avenue and thought it was “a shame that nothing happens there." After a few phone calls she had a "Yes" from the property owners and eventually worked with Montgomery County to figure out the rest.
Development of downtown Silver Spring has meant new energy and new businesses, making it hard for some to compete. Ergo, McCann says there is concern that "some of the smaller businesses will be priced out by the new business.” Her plan for the market is to bring unique vendors to the area with the hope of encouraging new small businesses to move into Silver Spring to accent those currently serving the community.
McCann hopes to have a mix of crafts, art, antiques and services, like a Henna artist and an orchid seller who teaches repotting, but has been working with the founders of the Eastern Market and is following their advice to be open-minded about the type of vendors. Timed to correspond with the nearby farmer's market, Fenton Street Market could become a natural next step in a Silver Spring Saturday afternoon.

McCann said she is trying to take care of licenses and insurance and to keep booth space inexpensive. Both 10 x 10 and 10 x 20 booths are available and range from $15 to $25 a day. And really, where else can you rent space at that price this side of Kabul.

The market's hours for the public are 9 AM to 2 PM. Free parking is available in public lots across Fenton Street. Vendors should plan to arrive at 7 AM.


Anonymous said...

you didn't mention the developer by name. i'm willing to bet, however, it 2 or 3 years when they decide to develop this piece and the community screams about their greed in building on their site and stealing the market that the name winds up on your site.

Shaun on Aug 5, 2009, 5:33:00 PM said...

The developer for the site is the Fenton Street Group. According to McCann, their current plan for the space is an extended-stay Marriott.

Anonymous said...

My point is you rarely see the word "developer" without it being preceded by "greedy". In this case, the developer donated their lot, and you don't mention them by name. When they build the hotel, the community will only know that Fenton Street Group shut down their open air market, not that they donated the space in the first place. and I'm pretty sure they'll be called greedy.

Unknown on Aug 5, 2009, 9:24:00 PM said...

Hi Anonymous, Hannah McCann here. The Fenton Street Group isn't donating their lot--I'm renting it from them--but they are being very supportive of this venture. And I'm making sure my neighbors know that. There are still a lot of empty lots in downtown Silver Spring. If the Marriot comes, we can always relocate the market nearby.

Ken on Aug 5, 2009, 10:13:00 PM said...

Anon - (feel free to use a name, makes it easier); this site focuses on development and developers, we are generally supportive of development within the urban confines, so you're frustration with us is misplaced. We do appreciate the sentiment, though. Thanks

Michelle Byars Gray on Aug 6, 2009, 10:13:00 AM said...

Wow...this looks exciting. I'll be there to check it out on opening day!

Anonymous said...

Go Hannah - Thanks for the effort - are you still with the AIA.

Chris Landis

Anonymous said...

Correction - the developer is The Fenton Group LLC ( They have embraced the community and encouraged their involvement in the new planned development on the lot.

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