Recently recognized by the American Planning Association as “one of America’s 10 great public spaces,” Philadelphia’s Reading Terminal Market is at the top of its game in these food-obsessed times.
“We place a very high premium on recruiting local food merchants to preserve that unique Philadelphia feel,” explained general manager Paul Steinke, who recently stepped down to run for an at-large seat in City Council.
Longtime residents will recall that it wasn’t always so. In the last century, the historic market declined along with the city’s population, reaching a low point in the 1970s. The creation of a nonprofit governing board, followed by Steinke’s 13-year tenure at the helm, turned the market around and established its vibrancy.
What advice would Steinke offer to his successor? “The market needs to respect its tradtions,” he said. “But the market also needs to stay current on the latest in food trends and to gently adapt as much as possible.”
Paul Steinke discussed the Reading Terminal Market’s past, present and future with NewsWorks Tonight’s Dave Heller.