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    Eastern Market: Adding To The Historic Landscape Of New Detroit (All 43 Acres Of It)
    Featured image by Danielle Walquist Lynch via Flickr

    People drive there on Saturdays for fresh produce. They ride their bikes over to explore the artisanal vendors. Some stroll through with cameras to admire the mix of Victorian architecture and vibrant street art. The Eastern Market adds a lot to our city’s character, and Detroit Sign Factory has been lucky enough to put up some beautiful signs in this neighborhood. But before we talk about the projects we’ve done, let’s talk about the area’s distinct history.

    Eastern Market wall art

    Image by soupstance via Flickr

    The History Of Eastern Market

    When Detroiters talk about Eastern Market, many are referring to the farmers market and its huge open-air sheds. In actuality, the neighborhood takes up 43 acres of space. However, this is not Eastern Market’s original location.

    The market was originally located on the river and Woodward Ave. before moving to Cadillac Square in 1841. Back then, it primarily sold wood and hay. About 50 years later, additional sheds were built to expand the market’s offerings, which is when it was moved to its current location just north of Downtown.

    After WWII, the market began to bustle with wholesale food sellers, catering more to food distributors than everyday home shoppers. But in 1970, the city made efforts to revitalize the farmers market. They didn’t have a lot of money, so they paid an artist by the name of Alex Pollard to paint murals on some of the buildings. Many Detroiters still recognize his famous “Veggie-Ta-Bull” on the side of the Metro Cold Storage building along with about 30 other pieces created at that time.

    A Neighborhood With A Lot To Offer

    Presently, Eastern Market is a thriving area for commerce, especially during the holiday season. They host numerous events, like Eastern Market After Dark, a unique and immersive part of the Detroit Design Festival that features dozens of galleries and walk-through exhibits.

    According to the Detroit Historical Society:

    “Eastern Market is the largest open-air flowerbed market in the United States and the largest historic public market district in the United States.”

    The neighborhood also boasts over 150 local businesses, including Supino Pizzeria, a local favorite.

    DSF Signs In the Eastern Market

    In our work with local businesses, we’ve been fortunate enough to create a few signs in Eastern Market. We created an eye-catching piece for the Loft Warehouse, a residential space that was renovated from an old fire station. In fact, the sign we made for them sits above the tall folding doors where fire trucks used to pass through!

    The Loft Warehouse in Eastern Market

    The sign we installed for the Loft Warehouse to reflect the neighborhoods historic charm.

    We also got to work with 3 Dogs 1 Cat, an urban pet shop supplying locals with hip, affordable, and eclectic merchandise for their animals. For them, we installed window graphics in front of their building (which you can read more about here), showing off their name and their distinct logo.

    Window Graphics

    Window graphics we installed for a local business in Eastern Market.

    What was most fun about creating these signs was the fact that, while professional-looking and new, they were also designed to highlight the historic nature of the neighborhood. As Detroit’s neighborhoods grow, more businesses will move to the area, transforming the landscape with their unique branding, products, and services.

    Eastern Market is totally different today than it was when it opened. But as it changes, it’ll transform into something even more special, contributing new identities to our city’s culture and building on its past.

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