Fri. Jan 21st, 2022

Say hello to the Rise Up Marketplace. πŸͺ

One of Vancouver’s most iconic small buildings survives and thrives thanks to a few local business owners.

Strathcona’s former Vernon Drive Grocery at Vernon Dr. and E. Georgia St. has been transformed into the Rise Up Marketplace.

After more than a century (120 years to be exact), several companies have come and gone on the site – including the John Craig Confectionary, dating back to 1915.

The building was put up for sale in February and there was speculation that the historic site would finally face its death.

This is where Rajesh Narine and Roger Collins come in.

The co-owners of Cartems Donuts and Calabash Bistro, respectively, leased the property in the summer after the land was purchased by a development company. The duo has since converted the three-bedroom, 594 square meter space into a renewed common market.

Earlier this year, Narine was recovering from hip surgery, while Collins was recovering from a serious car accident.

It seemed like an unlikely time for them to start a new business, but both agreed that they needed a lifestyle change.

β€œI felt there was a need to bring a little more diversity and culture to the city in general,” Collins explains.

In addition to traditional grocery stores, Rise Up will offer to-go coffee, donuts, Jamaican patties, pastries, sandwiches and soups.

β€œWe’re going to have a lot of local artisans doing amazing things, from clothes to jewelry to soap to shampoo, and all of their products will be available for sale,” Narine adds.

“You can feel the story here, and for us, we feel blessed to be able to contribute to it and continue the story of this space. It’s a great opportunity for us and the community,” Collins said.

Rise Up Marketplace officially opens on November 3rd.

By Victor

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *