17 Aug Introducing: Mother Road Market!
Lobeck Taylor Family Foundation announces plans for $5.5 million Mother Road Market
Lobeck Taylor Family Foundation announces homegrown market
This article originally appeared in the Tulsa World on July 26, 2017. Read the original here.
Start with a sliver of historic Route 66, add dashes of homegrown edibles and entrepreneurship, and one has the ingredients for the Lobeck Taylor Family Foundation’s newest venture.
Celebrating its 20th anniversary as a nonprofit, LTFF announced plans Wednesday to develop the $5.5 million Mother Road Market at its headquarters at 1124 S. Lewis Ave. Billed as a vibrant community space, it will feature 26,000 square feet and 17 curated shops designed to bridge the next step for graduates of Kitchen 66, a food incubator founded by LTFF.
Local pizzeria Andolini’s will be anchor tenant of the Market, which will be a renovation of the 1939 Scrivner-Stevens Grocery building.
“These food hall and public markets are popping up all over the United States,” LTFF CEO Elizabeth Ellison said in an interview earlier this week.
“We are really unique because we are a nonprofit that is operating it. It gives us the added ability to infuse community programming and business assistance into the market.
“I love the idea of educating the community about our food system — not just how food is grown but why it matters that restaurant A uses farm B to supply their food, and here’s why it’s better for our entire community if we try to do that. And by the way, let’s talk about why it’s important to eat fruits and vegetables and how to prepare them in a way that’s cost-effective and healthier for you and your family.”
An estimated 150 people witnessed the official announcement Wednesday afternoon beneath a large tent at Fuel 66, a nearby food truck court on 11th Street. Kathy Taylor, co-founder of LTFF with her husband, Bill Lobeck, was among Wednesday’s speakers.
“Our family’s love for cars and our family’s passion for food and our very keen sense that something this world needs more of are innovators and risk-takers makes it fitting that we are here today ready to answer the third decade of our foundation’s work with the Mother Road Market,” she said.
The overall estimated economic impact for the first year of Mother Road Market is $23 million, Taylor said.
“We are here today for the city because this means a lot to us. It means a lot to our community,” Tulsa Mayor G.T. Bynum said after recognizing the city councilors in attendance. “You think about what built Tulsa up, what made it so great. It is that you had generation after generation of people who came here and wanted to bring the best the world had to offer here, wanted to honor entrepreneurs.
“I think about the Lobeck-Taylor family … and I just can’t help but be filled with gratitude.”
Sixteen rentable shops at Mother Road Market will be 320 square feet each, with another space about 640 square feet. Also, Kitchen 66 will carve out 3,440 square feet in the new facility for its commercial kitchen, as well as for a general store and demonstration kitchen.
Other amenities of the Market will include a bar, a 640-square-foot space to house restaurant pop-ups, an indoor-outdoor seating area and children’s activities. Selser Schaefer Architects is designing Mother Road Market, and Fox + Allen Realty will handle the leasing. The project is expected to be completed by late spring 2018.
“To me, the Market is just the logical next step for supporting those food entrepreneurs and really showcasing what they have to offer,” Ellison said. “Oklahoma is known as an agricultural state … but we also have this value add of bringing these amazing food businesses who are using these local ingredients and getting to know our farmers and then making this incredible food. Everybody wins.
“We’re just trying to minimize the risk of starting a brick-and-mortar business. In our view, the Kitchen 66 graduates would take the shorter-term leases in the shops and then either move to a permanent location or decide that they are going to open a food truck or open a bigger, brick-and-mortar business.”
Exterior Rendering Concepts