February 8, 2023
Annapolis, US 42 F

A Preliminary Peek At Annapolis’ New Market House

Eye On Annapolis has learned the plans for the new Market House.  While the City will not say, a source close to the project  has said that there will be six vendors and that all of the leases are in the process of being signed.  The Market House is scheduled to re-open in the spring of 2013.

Because the lease has not been signed, the primary tenant has asked us to not disclose their name. However, we can say that it is a local business in the downtown area who will be creating a new concept (for them) to utilize one third of the Market House Space.  They told us that there will be four additional tenants in the completed building and that all of them will be food-related.

Annapolis Mayor, Josh Cohen spoke with us this afternoon and was not willing to confirm any information. When pressed, the Mayor said, “The Market House is still on track to open in the spring of 2013. I can say that there will be fewer vendors than before allowing more space for the vendors and customers.” The Mayor was able to confirm that all vendors will be food-based vendors and not retail goods. Cohen continued, “The Market House will never be like it was before; and our goal is to do it right. Most importantly, it needs to be economically sustainable to vendors and present an authentic Annapolis experience. I am very confident that we have the right mix of vendors and it will be a great success.”

Knowing how much of a problem the Market House has been over the past decade, Eye On Annapolis can understand the position of the City and the vendors about a premature announcement and will respect their wishes and keep it under wraps for now. When asked about when an announcement could be expected, Cohen would only say “soon.”

As we reviewed the concept, the latest iteration of the Market House will, indeed, be completely different and should be very successful. The primary vendor is familiar with the City and understands what needs to be done to bring traffic and revenue to the Market House–and we think  so as well.

Stay tuned for an official announcement “soon.”


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  1. “Do it right”? Arrogance! The market house was originally an open-air market where the townspeople went to shop Now it is enclosed, air-conditioned/heated and will cater to yuppies, NOT to everyday people like the ORIGINAL MARKET DID. The nerve these people have to say t hat THEY are going to “do it right”! They haven’t been ab;e to GET it right for the past ten years – what makes them think they have it right now?

    And let’s add LIES to the arrogance. What happened to the complaints that the market house had the feel of a “food court” and the promises that the “new” market house wouldn’t be like that? If all the new vendors are going to be food-related, it sounds like it will still fell like a food court to me.

    The people to whom the city of Annapolis has entrusted the redesign and re-leasing of the market house have, over the past 10 years, proven that they have no clue about what they’re doing: bad air conditioning/heating system designs not once but twice; failed leases; failed vendors.

    It’s a good thing that the Moyer administration listened to whomever advised them not to let the tenants extant at the time of Hurricane Isabel return – quite an astute business decision. Mann’s sandwiches had been in the market house for over 30 years, yet they were kicked to the curb like so much rubbish. Machoan chicken had been there for over 15 years; they got the same treatment. The gourmet cheese shop was thrown out as well; fortunately they quickly found a successful location on Randall Street.

    And now there is an empty building with no signed leases (a promise of a signed lease is as good as a promise of a million dollars – until it’s in your hand it’s worthless).

    Well, let’s all sit back and see how the next scene in this tragedy of incompetence plays out. I, for one, anticipate another short performance.

  2. It’s difficult to put much trust in the same sad sorry promises of how great Market House is going to be. We just have to wait a few more weeks, or months, or seasons, etc. Instead, I expect fast food and a very touristy feel. I doubt if fresh fish, mussels, scallops or the like will be available in the ‘new’ Market House. But I’m sure there will be plenty of pizza and burgers and fries. My money says that even the tourists will turn up their noses.

  3. Rick–I have been a critic of the City’s handling of this and offered my suggestions as to direction in the past. Unfortunately, the new tenant has asked me not to go into too much detail just yet as some “T’s” need to be crossed and some “I’s” dotted. But I can say that this is NOT like the old Market House and not like any of the newer versions. Fewer vendors, all food centric and I think you, the locals, and tourists will be pleasantly surprised. The folks that are now behind this would never have committed to it if they weren’t sure of success. They have a long and storied record of success.

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