Colourful East Village Junction has big opening year

East Village has grown as a community within the last year, with many new revitalized establishments such as the East Village Junction (EVJ)  market.

The market, which is housed in a collection of brightly-coloured, old shipping containers, opened its doors on June 1st, with vendors such as Lululemon, Rath Bicycle Sales and Rentals, and Maker Faire participating.

“East Village Junction is like Calgary’s version of Granville Island,” a representative for EVJ said.

The market also has weekly events such as yoga, ‘Junction Jams’, various running crews and a pop-up branch of the Calgary Public Library.

One of the vendors occupying a shipping container, The Maker Faire, finds the weekly Showcase events at the Junction a useful way to connect with the public.

This year will be the sixth annual Maker Faire in Calgary.

“The Maker Faire is basically a show and tell event. It helps to celebrate creativity within the community.” Dianna Smith with the Maker Faire Calgary said.

East Village Junction in Calgary Saturday, Sept. 23, 2017. East Village Junction shipping container retailers (Photo by Amanda Vi G/The Press)

“The showcase is for people aged birth to death.” Maria Hoover with the Maker Faire Calgary said.

Every weekend the Maker Faire uses its shipping container space to showcase past inventions such as a 50-foot long train track that was made to go around the convention last year.

Children were encouraged to build and design their own toy train car to test out on the track.

East Village Junction in Calgary Saturday, Sept. 23, 2017. East Village Junction shipping container retailers (Photo by Amanda Vi G/The Press)

Although representatives of EVJ were unsure of the market’s future site, they are confident that the market will be running again in the summer of 2018.

This year’s site used to be an old gas station but while the city goes through the process of rehabilitating the area, the EVJ containers were placed there to help build a sense of community in the area.

This allows it to show off Calgary’s finest small businesses.

East Village is one of the oldest neighbourhoods in Calgary, dating back to 1906.

Initially, the community was made up of a mix of residential, commercial and industrial activities.

But things went downhill, and in 1941 the City Medical Officer of Health declared East Village to be a “skid row.”

Demolition in the area began around 1960.

The community was ignored by Calgarians until the Calgary Municipal Land Corporation (CMLC) was formed in 2008.

The CMLC has invested $357 million into the redevelopment of East Village.

This includes the construction of the award-winning River Walk, parks, new homes and bridges.

The community is now expected to grow from 3,000 citizens to 11,500 by this time next year.

For more information about the East Village Junction, check out its website here.

About Amanda Gladstone 3 Articles
As a writing and communications major in the journalism program at SAIT, Amanda Gladstone worked as a reporter for The Press during the 2017-18 academic year.