Election season is quickly approaching, which means Joshy-boy has been more active on the social media front. Something tells me it’s at the encouragement of his campaign manager. Last week, the Mayor posted a pic on Facebook along with “Trying out new, more vibrant colors on the Market House. What do you think?” He also posted a pic of construction, “Ricardo and Francisco breaking ground today to lay new pipes and electric for the new Amsterdam Falafelshop in the Market House!” We asked if this was the only vendor requiring work but he didn’t respond. We think his campaign manager needs to tell him about Instagram.
Anyhow, things seem to be moving along with the Market House, which is great news. I don’t think anyone will disagree with that. And if JoCo wants to keep his prime parking spot in the Hillman garage, he better darn well get that thing opened before we head to the polls in November. He knows that. His camp knows that. And I think collectively, the City wants (and needs) that.
But at what cost? We got this email from the guy who’s heading up the Market House contracts, and who also happens to be a part owner of the Falafel franchise group, but that’s a whole different subject. This was attached to his email. Personally, I’m not in love with the colors or design. But I also get that Sally is the resident-artist-contractor for the City of Annapolis, so she’s gonna get the work either way. And the opposition to the proposal will only really delay the process… so how does that really benefit anyone? Her argument, however, is a little off-base:
Are we supposed to expect quality vendors to risk their livelihoods while not allowing them to advertise and compete in today’s marketplace? These businesses will not survive if their potential customers can’t even tell that MH is open. Who knows how long before it sits vacant again.
Maybe Sally and Chuck didn’t do their homework, but the folks who are opening shop in the Market House have quite a few other business ventures that put food on their tables, a roof over their head, and clothes on their back. Have you seen those HB Properties sign around town? The seafood and oyster bar, the coffee, the corned beef – yes. Ten bucks says their to-go bags will say “Land and Sea.” The falafel stand – we already covered that. Not sure about the organic market, but they have a place in Severna Park that must be doing okay that they’re able to afford the space in the Market House. And the gelato people… well… they’ve obviously survived since they were last around town. So if you’re going to try and get people to support you, be honest and upfront. Please.
So next week on the 14th, they’ll have the Historic Preservation Commission (HPC) Public Hearing. Attend if you’d like. Or attend to watch what could be a great show! It’ll be a genuine display of small-town politics as it’s literally the day after the new Ward 1 Alderman, Joe Budge, gets sworn in. His wife is head of the HPC. All the articles say that Mr. Budge wants the Market House open. I know that Ms. Kennedy also shares that same vision. But I’ve also seen her testify at City Council meetings regarding the integrity of the HPC. Given the amount of work Art at Large has already done in the City, I sure hope they’ve done their homework and don’t make complete donkey-hiney’s of themselves. This should be interesting…