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The Primacy of Food Hall Gathering Places

In a world of chain retail and restaurants, food halls can deliver an authentic local experience.

The primacy of food hall gathering places has been established for generations, but in the U.S. these venues are just now being fully realized.   For those unfamiliar with the term and concept, food halls can range from 10,000 SF to well over 30,000 SF and under one roof feature numerous local chefs, taverns, butcher shops, and food (and beverage) oriented retail offerings.

 

Food halls got their start with major department stores in the UK, back in the late 18th and early 19th century.   Within the grand retail emporiums, a multi-venue food hall was a popular amenity for shoppers.   Some observers will note that gathering places with vibrant food credibility date back much further, to The Grand Bazaar in Istanbul (1461), and Trajan’s Market (113 AD) in ancient Rome.

 

Over the past five years in the U.S., a large number of new food hall offerings have opened.  In general, these venues have been well received by consumers in their respective local markets.   The vitality of these places, the food preparation, the choice and authenticity of non-chain offerings, the camaraderie of the public place, the people watching, these food halls are terrific placemaking examples.  Some of the best new food halls are situated in major mixed-use developments and shopping malls that are being repurposed and redeveloped.

 

For 2020, the year of Covid-19, food halls have been sidelined.  Many argue that food halls will be the last to recover from the pandemic, since the magic of these food halls is the proximity of fellow diners brought together in joyful communal circumstances.   And since food halls depend on numerous operators at each location, these venues are difficult to operate at lesser capacities.  The primacy of food hall gathering has been with us since these earliest days.

 

The food hall concept was extremely popular through 2019, so there was likely some saturation of the concept prior to Covid-19 hitting the marketplace.   But like so many trendy products, after some reduction in number, the best of these food halls will endure and make their contribution to more vital communities.

 

The Primacy of Food Hall Gathering Places

 

 

Tracking the Major Players

 

We monitor this industry sector, watching the deals and new locations of the major food hall operators and their investors.  Our listing is just getting started, so we’ll appreciate your thoughts on food hall players we should have listed here.  Thank you for that!

Major Food Hall Operators
Food HallEstablishedOperatorAbout
Assembly Food Hall
Nashville, Tennessee
2021The Food Hall Co.A 100,000 SF food hall at Fifth + Broadway project, reported to be the largest in the U.S. The venue will feature 30 food stalls, cocktail bars, and a rooftop venue for local musicians.
Auction House Market
New Orleans, Louisiana
Beast food hall at Area 15
Las Vegas, Nevada
2021Todd EnglishCreated by chef Todd English. The Beast kitchen will collaborate on menus and prepare dishes for a number AREA15's experiences including Dueling Axes, Emporium, Five Iron Golf and ongoing events and immersive dining experiences inside the venue.
Budd Dairy Food Hall
Columbus, Ohio
www.budddairyfoodhall.com
2021Cameron Mitchell RestaurantsTo be situated in the Budd Dairy building in the Italian Village community near downtown Columbus. 14,000 SF plus a rooftop deck.
Center Street Market
5354 Center Street, Hilliard, Ohio
2020a 17,000-square-foot space anchored by a brewery
Central Food Hall at Ponce City Market
675 Ponce de Leon Ave., NE, Atlanta, Georgia
2015Jamestown
Chelsea Market
New York City
www.chelseamarket.com
Located in the heart of New York City’s Meatpacking District. The site first housed the National Biscuit Company (Nabisco) factory complex where the Oreo cookie was invented.
China Live
644 Broadway, San Francisco, California
2017George Chen and Cindy Wong-ChenA 30,000 SF food hall in four levels.
Cipriani Food Hall at Waterline Square
New York City
CiprianiAt 28,000 SF, Cipriani’s Food Hall first-ever large scale culinary food hall experience.
Citizen Public Market
9355 Culver Blvd., Culver City, California
www.citizenpublicmarket.com
2020The food hall is situated in restored former publishing house, the 2 story space includes eight restaurants along with patio seating and rooftop deck.
Crave Food Hall at Discovery Park
West Lafayette, Indiana
20198,000 SF food hall at Purdue University's Discovery Park in West Lafayette.
DeKalb Market Hall
445 Albee Square West, Brooklyn, New York
www.dekalbmarkethall.com
2017Offers 40 entrepreneurs all manner of food and related in about 60,000 SF of underground space in Downtown Brooklyn.
Dr. Murphy’s Food Hall
1811 West Harrison Street, Chicago, Illinois
www.drmurphysfoodhall.com
2020Hospitality HQA concept of Akhtar Nawab, an award-winning chef and CEO of Hospitality HQ. To be operated at Chicago’s old Cook County Hospital building, featuring 10 chef-driven concepts in the historic space.
East Market / Trolley District
1600 Oak Street, Columbus, Ohio
The East Market is the largest of five buildings that make up the Trolley District, a development created out of the structures that once housed the city's trolley car operations.
Eataly - the Company2007EatalyThe food hall operator was established by Oscar Farinetti in 2007, in a repurposed vermouth factory in Turin, Italy.
Eataly Chicago
43 East Ohio Street, Chicago, Illinois
2013Eataly
FICO World Eataly
Via Paolo Canali, 8, 40127 Bologna BO, Italy
2017Politan GroupA huge food park under one 100,000 square meter roof, featuring 45 branded Italian eateries.
Food Hall at Crockett Row
3000 Crockett Street, Fort Worth Texas
2018
Food Hall at Rock Row
Portland, Maine
2023Will include 550 seats. Part of a $600 million, 110-acre, open-air streetscape of shops, restaurants, offices, and events.
Food Hall at the The Mosaic
Detroit, Michigan
www.themosaicdetroit.com
2024Will be helmed by Robert Montwaid, the founder and creator of New York City's Gansevoort Market and Atlanta's Chattahoochee Food Works. The food hall will occupy 25,000 square feet, plus an additional 4,000 square-foot rooftop bar.
Foodlife
835 Michigan Ave., Chicago, Illinois
1994Lettuce Entertain You EnterprisesPermanently shuttered in 2020, was located at Water Tower Place. First opened in 1994.
Fulton Galley
Chicago
Fulton GalleyPermanently closed.
Glendora Public Market
Glendora, California
2020The 16,000 SF food hall is situated in a former Wonder Bread bakery, and features 10 food and drinks vendors,
Inner Rail Food Hall
1911 S. 67th Street, Omaha, Nebraska
www.innerrailfoodhall.com
2019Hospitality HQ
Junction Food & Drink
2000 S Colorado Blvd Building IV, Denver, Colorado
202012,220 SF
Keg and Case West
928 7th St W, St Paul, Minnesota
2018The food hall opened with 23 distinct vendor spaces.
Legacy Food Hall
7800 Windrose Ave., Plano, Texas
2017The Food Hall Co.
Little Italy Food Hall
550 W. Date Street, Suite B, San Diego, California
2018
Luna Park
601 S. Miami Ave Suite 181-C, Miami, Florida
202040,000 SF food hall located at Brickell City Centre in the space formerly occupied by La Centrale (opened 2018).
Lyric Market
411 Smith St., Houston, Texas
www.lyricmarket.com
2020 Hospitality HQ
Market on 8th
41 E. 8th Street, National City, California
2021Joel TubaoAn 11,000 SF food hall with 14 food vendors.
Marketplace by La Cochina2021La CocinaA 7,000 SF venue. Combined with La Cocina’s community-led development, the Marketplace will aim to provide careers for residents of the neighborhood, in addition to its continued work to provide economic opportunities for low-income, immigrant, and women-of-color entrepreneurs.
Midtown Global Market
920 E Lake St., Minneapolis, Minnesota
www.midtownglobalmarket.org
2006Neighborhood Development Center and Cultural Wellness CenterLocated in the old Sears and Roebuck building on East Lake Street. The Neighborhood Development Center and the Cultural Wellness Center own the Market and continue to offer business support services to the merchants.
Morgan Street Food Hall & Market
Raleigh, North Carolina
2018
Pike's Place Market
Seattle, Washington
www.pikeplacemarket.org
1907
Pythian Market
New Orleans, Louisiana
www.pythianmarket.com
2018The food hall features 13 vendors.
Reno Public Market
Reno, Nevada
2022Foothill PartnersEnvisioned to have 15 to 20 food vendors, as well as an art collective, and other cultural vendors. A repurposing of the former Shoppers Square retail space.
Revolutsia
Wichita, Kansas
2018
Riverside Food Lab
3605 Market Street, Riverside, California
2018Arteco PartnersAt opening the food hall included 14 tenants. Located adjacent to the Fox Performing Arts Center.
Sandusky Market
Sandusky, Ohio
2022Collective Projects (Ohio)To be located at the site of the former Kreimes Cardinal Grocery on East Washington Street.
St. Roch Market
New Orleans, Louisiana
2015
State Street Market
Los Altos, California
2021Bon Appetit Management CompanyLos Altos Community Investments is the development group behind the food hall.
The Amp
1220 Waterway Blvd., Indianapolis
2021Craig BakerA 40,000 SF artisan marketplace and food hall located in HQO, the innovation hub at the heart of the 16 Tech Innovation District. Situated in shipping containers.
The Collective at Grandview Crossing
Columbus, Ohio
2023The 22,000 SF hall will feature an anchor restaurant and bar and a second-floor event space, along with 10 to 12 food and retail vendors and indoor and outdoor seating for about 600 patrons. The food hall will open onto a 3.5-acre park.
The Garage Food Hall
906 Carrollton Avenue, Indianapolis
2021Geronimo Hospitality GroupThe Garage Food Hall is a 38,00 SF community eatery and gathering place; part of The Bottleworks District.
The Grand Bazaar
Istanbul
1461Among the earliest forms of "food hall" that has influenced what food halls are today.
The Old North State Food Hall
67 Jr Rd Suite 300, Selma, North Carolina
2020 eEastfield Hospitality, LLCTo be situated within a repurposed JR's Cigars warehouse. Ten unique, chef-driven concepts will be offered in 14,000 SF.
Time Out Markets2014Oakley CapitalTime Out Market is a food and cultural market leveraging the Time Out brand to bring a curated roster of tenants under one roof, the best chefs, drinks, and cultural experiences according to the Time Out editors. The company's first unit was in Lisbon (Portugal).
Urbanspace
Blossom Market Hall
San Gabriel, California
2021

2022 Directory of Food Halls

From the Research unit, SCP Adventure Entertainment Cos. LLC
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