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Low-Line Market opens under CTA Brown Line station in Lakeview

(JoVona Taylor/RedEye )
June 07, 2013|By JoVona Taylor | RedEye

There's a new CTA line--but it won’t take you anywhere.

The Low-Line Market, which opened Thursday under the Brown Line’s Southport station in Lakeview, offers fresh produce and artisanal foods from a variety of vendors every week until Oct. 17.

"We really wanted to have a higher mix of prepared food vendors for this market," said Megan Larmer, Low-Line Market manager and a 32-year-old Logan Square resident. "Part of that [reasoning] was an attempt to get people to think of this area as a place they wanted to stay and enjoy themselves and also because this is an evening market.:

The market is open Thursdays from 4 to 8 p.m. until Sept. 5 and then from 4 to 7 p.m. until it closes for the year in October.

Inspired by a similar concept in New York, the Low-Line Market makes use of the uninviting space beneath the tracks as a part of the Lakeview Area Master Plan, which was introduced two years ago and pushed by the Lakeview Chamber of Commerce.

"A bigger goal of the plan is to connect the Southport station and the Paulina station with an under-the-L-walking path, which we called the Low-Line in the plan, and that’s how [the market] got its name," said Heather Way, Lakeview Chamber of Commerce executive director.

Way said the refurbished area between the two stations will include landscaping and a cover to shelter the market from bad weather and minimize noise from trains traveling above.

The first Low-Line Market’s opening attracted a number of visitors after its unveiling Thursday night.

"I'm excited [about Low-Line Market], I like that it’s a Thursday night thing and that I can get out in the neighborhood,"said Annie Kelley, a 25-year-old Lakeview resident and teacher.

Edgewater’s Axel Erkenswick, 25-year-old founder and chef partner at one of the market’s vendors, Penny Pastry, said he is looking forward to seeing how his Lakeview-based business benefits from his participation.

"This is our first market that is in the city proper," he said. "This market is going to give us some great exposure to commuters and people around Chicago that have the ability to support a lot of these vendors and allow them to become a bigger part of the community."

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