Reading Terminal Market launches crowdfunding campaign to stay open, thriving amid COVID-19

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- Reading Terminal Market is a Philadelphia historical landmark.

It may seem hard to imagine, but like other businesses, it too has fallen on tough times during this pandemic.

The non-profit has now launched its first-ever crowdfunding campaign to stay open and thriving, not just for the customers and the city, but for the more than 80 family-owned vendors inside.

Reading Terminal Market has operated continuously since 1893, and they're not about to give that up.

"I think our location is what's hurting us," says Vinnie Iovine, owner of Iovine Brothers Produce.

"Not everyone's working, so the people that were right across the street are not there to come down and shop during lunch, so it's been kind of tough right now. It's been a little harder than it has been in the past. A lot harder," Iovine said.

With tourism down, conventions and events canceled, offices closed and lunch crowds slim, some vendors shut down altogether.

The new GoFundMe campaign would help maintain the building and the vendors.

"Ultimately, it's about keeping those businesses here at (Reading) Terminal open and available to everyone who lives and works in Philadelphia," said Conor Murphy, general manager of Reading Terminal Market. "It's about being available, being open and being here for the next 128 years and beyond."

Reading Terminal Market also recently added e-commerce, another first in the market's history.

Officials said pre-coronavirus, they had about 50,000 visitors a day. They're now seeing half that number.

Click here for more on their crowdfunding effort.
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