ABSTRACT

Purpose - In urban regeneration projects, considerations for rejuvenating traditional public markets are becoming increasingly important. That is because the traditional market is not just a commercial space but also a living center for local people’s existence. Cultural contents like these are invaluable assets in the contemporary economy. However, traditional markets are gradually declining because of changes in distribution systems and consumer lifestyles. New distribution systems such as modern distribution markets, home shopping, and online shopping malls made traditional markets less competitive. Further, traditional markets have not been able to adapt to the changing consumption styles of younger generations. Some say that it is a natural phenomenon that cannot be stopped. However, traditional markets are not just another distribution system but also a valuable resource that encapsulates the local people’s tradition and history. Thus, a revitalization strategy for traditional public markets has become an urgent task in contemporary urban regeneration projects. This study aimed to find ways to activate traditional public markets by making it a community landmark based on visual merchandising perspectives. Research design and methodology - This study focused on analyzing Granville Island (Vancouver, Canada) as a role-model project for rejuvenating the traditional market. It investigated Granville Island both with walk-through evaluation and literature reviews. Results - We found that it has been developed not only to improve visual aspects, but also to promote cultural contents with high value added. For example, the developers maintained the visual elements that tell the original history of the site as an industrial factory. The renewal project had a balance between improving the outer look and creating attractive contents. The following are the merits of Granville Island that Korean traditional markets should note. First, they kept the whole area clean and hygienic. Second, merchants are well educated, business-savvy, and consumer-oriented. Third, the area’s total environmental designs were done by professionals of a high caliber. Fourth, the city government and the merchants’association were collaborating well in their efforts to accommodate the changing needs of consumers. Conclusions - This study made the following suggestions as a conclusion. First, it will be a very powerful tool to rejuvenate the traditional market if we can discover unique cultural resources and develop them as cultural products, experiences, and events. Consumers of the 21st century have a strong tendency to consume not only material products, but also the experiences and memories attached to them. Second, in order to maintain the unique characteristics of traditional markets, fostering the viability of the merchants’ association and local residents’ society would be essential. Third, it is necessary to make the traditional market into a cultural place not only for the shopping patronage of local residents, but also for attracting tourists to increase sales. Finally, professional management and design approaches are needed in order to make the traditional market a pleasant space from a visual merchandising standpoint.

KEYWORD

Urban Regeneration, Traditional Market, Visual Merchandising.

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