A new 4,000-square foot modern urban barn is proposed at the Farmers Market, 315 Detroit Street, on its North Fourth Avenue frontage. The barn will provide an enclosed space, heated in the winter months, to enhance the presence and function of the Farmers Market during the entire year. The Farmers Market has been operating at its current location since 1931. The proposed steel and glass building measures 50 feet wide by 80 feet deep and has a completely open interior. All four sides have industrial type multi-light steel windowed garage style pull down doors.
The Farmers Market is a downtown park, owned and operated by the Ann Arbor Parks & Recreation Services. One of the important goals of the project is to highlight open space features so that it’s readily identifiable as an urban park. The proposed development will fill the void on Fourth with a multi-purpose building that creates an aesthetically pleasing focal point and prominent entry to the Market. The structure design derives its inspiration from three sources; the agrarian roots of the vendors, the architecture of the existing historic canopies, and the urban industrial vibe of the Kerrytown district. The Farmers Market currently consists of metal canopies built in the 1030’s with standing seam metal roofs and steel columns and an existing market office of brick masonry. The design of the new structure borrows this existing architecture and building material, but introduces an agrarian theme with a modern barn structure. The “barn”, will have urban features, including industrial type multi-light steel windowed garage style pull down doors; a window style prominent in the Kerrytown neighborhood, as well as entrances, doors and landscaping befitting the context of the site. The goal for this project is to construct an enclosure that will fill the void created by the empty parking lot and canopies and provide an aesthetically pleasing focal point and prominent entry to the Market.
The Farmers Market is arguably the heart of Kerrytown. The existing market building and canopy structures are unlike any other buildings in the neighborhood yet are a cornerstone of the Kerrytown character. The proposed building will be a seamless addition to the Farmers Market. New visitors to the market may think it has always been there.