some emergent markets

mind the…cars? by jhuang
July 23, 2010, 8:27 pm
Filed under: Paris | Tags: , , ,

We discovered a new typology of markets in the last couple of days: a split market.  In order to get from one side to another, the visitors had to cross one or more streets [or church in the case of Jeanne d’Arc Market].  However, since the vendor offerings on each side were similar, the consumers don’t have to visit both sides of the market [unless they are enthusiastic market-goers like us].

Jeanne d’Arc Market | 13th arrondissemont

Jeanne d'Arc_Panorama1

Saint Charles Market | 15th arrondissemont


Some consumers do cross from one side to the other and they tend to do it through one of the gaps in the market stalls.


It’s Iconic by Daphne Lasky
July 21, 2010, 12:38 pm
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So much of our research has been focused on the nitty-gritty of Parisian markets (scaffolding, electrical outlets, bus stops and Metro signs), that a visitor to this blog could be excused for thinking that the city is entirely bereft of beautiful buildings and monuments. It’s time to correct this impression! Several of Paris’s markets take place in the shadow of the city’s most famous icons.

The Saxe-Bretuil market might be the most famous example of a food-shopping/icon-watching correlation. As you can see, in plan, the market is perfectly in line with the Eiffel Tower.

This doesn’t entirely bear out in person, however, as you can see from the photo below. Treetops block a bit of the view, and the busy market (those trucks, again) makes it difficult to find a spot to stand and admire it all.

The Bastille market is wonderful, but also full of tourists walking around looking for something to, well, storm. The monument in the middle of the traffic circle serves as a focal point at the entrance to the market, though it becomes less important as you walk further into the rows of market stalls.

The big surprise in all of this has been the market at the Square d’Anvers. Located Montmartre, the tiny market is sandwiched between apartment blocks, which in plan don’t seem all that promising. But! Montmartre is hilly, which opens up entirely new, non boulevard-/axis-related viewshed possibilities. Sacre Coeur is just up the hill from the square, and the view of it from the market is just lovely.

variations in fullness by jhuang
July 21, 2010, 11:28 am
Filed under: Paris | Tags: , , ,

The range of market fullness has been an intriguing quality in the markets we’ve visited.  Most are evenly distributed vendors that are sparse, full, or overflowing with rogue vendors. However, there are some with a gradient quality; one end bustling with people/vendors while it gradually diminishes until all that are left are skeletal stalls on the other.  All of these differences are probably dependent on market location, time of day or day of the week [or even month of the year since Parisians are already beginning to go on Summer vacation].

Here are a few of the evenly distributed markets starting from the most sparse [skeletal] to the most packed [cattle herding style].

Salpétrière market in the 13th arrondissemont, Tuesday and Friday mornings

Maubert market in the 5th arrondissement, Tuesday+Thursday+Saturday mornings

Belleville market in the 11th arrondissemont, Tuesday and Friday mornings

Barbès Market in the 18th arrondissemont, Wednesday and Saturday mornings

Here are some markets with the gradient fullness.  Is variation caused by their proximity to transportation hubs?  Or immediate surroundings?

Auguste Blanqui market in the 13th arrondissemont, Tuesday+Friday+Saturday mornings

The activity level went from this near Place d’Italie…

…to this on the west end

Port Royal market in the 5th arrondissemont, Tuesday+Thursday+Saturday mornings

West end_closer to the Port Royal RER station…

and its east end.

Mind the Gap by Daphne Lasky
July 21, 2010, 10:17 am
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The market structure here in Paris is remarkably linear. At markets like Belleville and Barbès, the space is so crowded that you can walk in a straight line for blocks before you find an opportunity to duck out into a different space.

On other occasions, we’ve come across markets with empty stalls. While the metal scaffolding is set up (thanks, city government!), an absent vendor creates a gap in the long stretch of produce-covered tables. Shoppers use these gaps as shortcuts for hopping from one row of stalls to another, and I’m starting to think of the empty stalls as potentially interesting field disturbances.

This gap opens up an interesting view across the market–it is so important to always be able to keep an eye on the cheese vendor.

free thinkers II! by jhuang
July 21, 2010, 10:16 am
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As a follow up to my previous post, the Batignolles organic market in the 17th arrondissemont was another one of 3 roving organic markets in Paris. Most of these vendors were the same as the ones at the Raspail organic market, but it was interesting to see how the vendors changed or adapted to the given physical situation. There was more space available so the vendors were more bold with their displays.

Some displays spanned across parts of back-to-back rows of canopy to create something like this:


Others extended into the street with their own equipment…


…and created spaces like this one:


Some even turned their stands 90 degrees from the canopy orientation to form horseshoe ends.


The result was a market that’s more interesting and conducive to wandering [the selection also contributed to this aspect].  The paths created here were the closest I’ve seen to a web or network.

free thinkers! by jhuang
July 19, 2010, 9:43 am
Filed under: Paris | Tags: , ,

Leave it to the organic market vendors to break out of the Parisian market system.  Instead of following the linear orientation of the overhead canopy [which they still used], they re-arranged their display set-ups to create more intimate spaces that allowed visitors to weave in and out of the “stands.”

At the Raspail Organic Market, the vendors spilled out onto the street with their own stall equipment…



…and redirected the flow of people to bring them into the vendor’s own space [notice the thin bollards indicating the edge of the median]:



Stay tuned for Batignolles Organic Market…

Park it Right Here by Daphne Lasky
July 18, 2010, 9:31 pm
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Some of the markets we’ve seen take place on lovely boulevards, with views, and benches, and plants, and fountains.

Others, however, take root over Valuable Parking Infrastructure. The Avenue Woodrow Wilson market displaces not benches, but parking spots, as it stretches past the Palais de Tokyo and other glamorous establishments.

A crosswalk (intended to help out market-goers, car-commuters, or intrepid architectural researchers, one wonders…) stretches into the market corridor:

Ignore the display cases full of organic cheese and look down at your feet. You’ll find market scaffolding delicately sidestepping painted parking guides:

At the end of the row of vendors, take a 360 spin to see the boulevard as both a market, and a parking lot: