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West Side Market changes Sunday shopping hours

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Posted at 3:09 PM, Feb 01, 2017
and last updated 2017-02-01 16:03:24-05

The West Side Market is changing its Sunday shopping hours from 12:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. to 10:00 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Ten months ago, the West Side Market announced it would add Sundays to the venue's operations.

After monitoring traffic coming in and out of the West Side Market, the City of Cleveland said most activities began as early 10:00 a.m. and significantly dropped 4:00 p.m. 

Over the course of last year, the market underwent changes from the construction of the parking behind the market to a drop in business for vendors.

Construction went on for most of the year with the second phase completed in the summer. On November 21, 2016, Cleveland City Council voted to hire a third party contractor to manage and maintain the lot. According to city officials, the contractor will be responsible for basic maintenance such as snow and debris removal, stripping, security and the collection of parking fees.

The contract will be in place for three years. 

But, many vendors with the market said the paid parking could deter patrons from visiting one of Cleveland's oldest landmarks. Since construction began on the lot vendors were concerned because their business took a big hit. Some said they were down 40-50 percent.

West Side Market Tenants Association President Vince Bertonaschi said rent for space at the market, collected by the City of Cleveland, has risen too high.

Bertanaschi also pointed to continued parking problems around the market, even though the city recently added 128 spots.

West Side Market vendor Jeff Campbell explained parking lot closures since April 2016, and a growing number of Ohio City business around the market have created a huge parking shortage.

"I don't think any of us felt that we were going to be down this long, or that they were going to shut so much of the lot down to hurt our business they way they've hurt it," said Campbell.

In the remaining months of 2016, vendors saw business and sales plummet.

Bertonaschi said the growing vendor rent costs imposed by the City of Cleveland and parking problems are partly to blame.

Bertonaschi said sales at the West Side Market are down by some 50% in some cases, and without a rent reduction he expects more stands to close in 2017.