“TheCeļotājs” –
 Touring Riga Latvia Is A Journey Though Time
Rīgas Centrāltirgus “Riga Central Market”
Come join “TheCeļotājs” visit to Rīgas Centrāltirgus “Riga Central Market” located south of Old Riga Centre City and located along Centrāltirgus. Here you can find shops catering from everything from clothes to foods of all kinds or anything you can think of every venue specializes on a particular product while the outside stalls sell everything from clothing to DVDs. Riga Central Market is the largest market in Riga and just one of many markets located through out the city.
The need to organize a central market in Riga was first discussed by the city fathers before the World War I. The project of the Riga railway hub developed in 1909/1910 at the request of the Riga-Orel railway company board envisaged building a railway branch for the needs of a new city market, between the city canal and the so-called red warehouses. Yet the war interrupted the implementation of these plans, and the project was resumed only years later. The damages caused by the war and the struggle for independence had to be repaired at first. When Riga's economic life returned to normal, the question of building a modern market was again on the city's agenda.
At the time almost a half of food products consumed by Rigans were sold at a 22 000 m2 large marketplace on the right side of the Daugava River. Here goods were sold in wooden stalls having no food storage equipment to meet even the basic sanitary requirements. It caused much trouble, particularly in summer. According to foreign experts, every year up to 12 lats worth of food products per capita were damaged in outdoor markets. In case of the Daugava riverside market, it meant up to 2 million lats of annual losses. Another factor hindering normal trade was the lack of access roads and facilities for handling goods.
On 28 December 1922 Riga City Council decided to build a new food product market in the city centre. For this purpose, the city authority signed a deal with the government to buy the Zeppelin hangars abandoned by the German Kaiser's army in the western Latvian region of Kurzeme near “Vaiņode”. So Zeppelin hangars become a landmark of Riga for both Rigans and the city's foreign guests. Despite the fact that no aircraft has been ever stationed where the hangars stand today, the origin of the market pavilions has been always a subject of rumors and speculations.
The initial plan was to use the whole hangars for the needs of the market, yet later it turned out that the constructions did not meet sanitary requirements set for a modern market because, being too high, their caused significant temperature variations inside. They also lacked necessary sanitary and technical facilities. Therefore, the decision was to use only the upper parts of the structures, while building the bases from bricks and reinforced concrete. As local builders lacked necessary experience for developing such projects, an international tender was announced in 1923. Seven projects were submitted for the tender, but only three of them can be found in archives today. As none of the submitted and awarded projects fully met Riga's demands, the city authorities decided to develop a new project using the ideas of those submitted to the tender. It was developed by the Market Construction Office led by architect P. Dreimanis. The project team consisted of engineers V. Isajevs and G. Tolstojs, architect P. Pavlovs and nine other experts, among them eight students of the University of Latvia who acted as technicians. A special market building committee was set up, including Riga City Administration's head of Building Section J. Jagars, head of Trade Section G. Ulmans and Audit Committee member P. Ladigins.
It was envisaged to build a total of five pavilions, the biggest of which “5000m2” was intended for wholesale trade and dressing of meat, but the four smaller ones “2592 m2 each” for retail trade. The first pavilion was designed for meat, the second one for dairy and meat products, the third was for bread, fruit, various food products and poultry, but the fourth was exclusively for fish.
Administration of Riga Central Market
7 Nēģu iela
Riga, LV-1050 Latvia
Tel.: +371 67229985
Fax: +371 67358171
Website: http://www.rct.lv [Latvian] 
Google Albums: Riga Central Market