Itoman Public Market is ready for for renovation
Itoman City is planning for a renovation of the Itoman Public Market that is a well-known and very popular place among the community. The market has currently 27 tenant stores selling groceries, clothing and miscellaneous sundry goods.
The market consists of three buildings that all are 40-50 years old. Most of the buildings are deteriorated and show damage, such as stripped off concrete ceilings and cracks in outer walls. They also don’t meet building code requirements against earthquakes.
According to city planners, two of the three current buildings will be combined into one concrete, one-story building with a total floor space of 1,100 square meters that will accommodate new shops in addition to the current ones. One of the current buildings will be maintained to temporarily house the current 27 shops during the construction of the new building. Later, it will be demolished, and a parking facility with space for about 40 vehicles will be constructed in its place.
According to the renovation plan, the market will become not only a community market, as it’s today, but also a facility for tourists and visitors. The new specialty of the market will be a restaurant, where customers can take fresh food they buy in the market for cooking, and then enjoy the food at the restaurant. The design of the building and shops will make it a community place where tourists and visitors can communicate with local people.
The renovation plan has been under consideration for the last 20 years, but it has always faced financial obstacles. City officials are planning to apply for a national subsidy this July that would considerably reduce the cost of the renovation to the city. They expect the approval in September.