Set to open in Late-Summer 2024, Track 15 will bring together local, chef-driven food concepts and additional vendors in a beautifully designed, historic space
Marsella Development Corporation is pleased to announce that its highly anticipated food hall, located within the capital city’s historic Union Station, will be named Track 15. In addition, the Marsella’s are thrilled to share Track 15’s first merchants: a seafood and raw bar concept from Dune Brothers; regional Mexican cuisine from Chef Maria Meza and her family at Dolores; burgers and more from There There; and two Italian concepts from Kevin O’Donnell, chef and owner of Giusto and Mother Pizzeria in Newport.
“This is a pivotal point in the development of Track 15,” said Christopher J. Marsella, President, Marsella Development Corporation. “After facing supply-chain issues and the hurdles that come with renovating an historic building, to be able to unveil the name, look and feel of the space and announce our merchant partners is a monumental occasion. The demolition of the interior of the building has been completed, and we look forward to forging ahead as we realize our team’s vision for this passion project.”
Built in 1898, the original Union Station consisted of 14 intercity rail lines and operated until 1986, when the smaller Amtrak station was built. The name Track 15 is a nod to Union Station’s earliest days as the hub of southeastern New England’s transportation network, supporting the machinery, textile, and jewelry industries that fueled the growth and future of Providence.
Track 15 will pay tribute to that era by joining a long-vacant space that once housed the original Capital Grille, Raphael’s, and more recently, Bar Louie, to offer an exciting and unique culinary and cultural experience unlike anything in Rhode Island.
Marsella Development Corporation and the Marsella family, who have been visionaries for Providence for decades, partnered with the acclaimed MK Global Hospitality Group to redevelop the storied space to deliver a diverse, inclusive, and approachable hospitality experience that reflects the many cultural influences in Rhode Island. Guests can expect to see a variety of offerings, including creative Italian, seafood, and Middle Eastern fare from well-known local culinary talent and up-and-comers in a lively and sophisticated setting.
“We are very excited to join the impressive line-up at Track 15 and bring a little taste of Newport to the Providence community,” said Kevin O’Donnell, owner, Giusto and Mother Pizzeria. “At Giusto PVD, Brian and I will be serving up some of our favorite homemade pastas highlighting great ingredients from Rhode Island farmers while Lauren, Kyle and I look forward to sharing our love for sourdough pizzas made with local stone-ground flour at Mother Pizzeria PVD.”
Joining O’Donnell are Nick and Monica Gillespie of Dune Brothers, who will offer their acclaimed seafood. “We’re elated to bring our pier-to-plate restaurant to Track 15 and to continue to showcase delicious seafood from local fishermen and women,” commented Nick Gillespie, chef/owner and Monica Gillespie, co-owner, Dune Brothers. “In addition to Dune Brothers classics like the lobster roll, fish sandwich and fish & chips, the space enables us to introduce some new items as well as a raw bar. We are excited for Rhode Island to finally have its own food hall and very proud to be a part of this project!”
“For decades, Providence has been on the cutting edge of culinary innovation, and we hope to add to that rich history with Track 15,” continued Marsella. “We are looking forward to showcasing the incredible diversity we have in Rhode Island through each operator’s unique culinary approach and make an indelible mark on our city, state, and region.”
“We’re excited to be part of this amazing venture with Track 15 and to share the space with a few peers that happen to be some of the best Rhode Island has to offer,” said Joaquin Meza, Chef, Dolores. “We look forward to showcasing our culinary traditions and sharing the culture and nostalgia of our mercados from our hometowns in Mexico.”
By definition, a food hall is usually a collection of small, locally developed restaurant concepts or new creations that come from the minds of local chefs or entrepreneurs and restaurateurs. According to Cushman & Wakefield’s 2018 Edition of Food Halls of North America, the most successful and profitable food hall projects can overwhelm the senses; they are visually appealing, the aromas are enticing and the spaces inviting. The vendors are global in nature, offering a wide range of variety and quality cuisines. They are often trendy, sometimes upscale, but always focused on authenticity and freshness.
And, despite the negative impact that the Covid-19 pandemic had on the restaurant industry, food halls are thriving. As stated by Trip Schneck, Executive Managing Director of Cushman & Wakefield and industry-leading expert in specialty food and beverage and entertainment procurement, the ability to easily switch out vendors, host private and public events, and offer a communal setting for groups that may want to eat different cuisines all contribute to a food hall’s resilience.
Matthias Kiehm, principal at MK Global Hospitality, brings more than 25 years of global hospitality experience to his senior consulting role in the Track 15 project. He has spent much of his career in directorial and managerial roles worldwide, including at the prestigious Harrods in London and Four Seasons Hotels. Upon establishing MK Global Hospitality Group, he spearheaded the concept development through the opening of the TimeOut Food & Cultural Markets in Chicago and Boston as well as The ‘Quin House in Boston.
“Partnering with the Marsella family has taken us on a journey through Rhode Island’s culinary world and has really opened our eyes to the incredible talent and diversity that exists in this state,” said Kiehm. “We are delighted and humbled to have the opportunity to bring an unrivaled hospitality venue and experience to the very cool and eclectic food scene of Rhode Island. Beyond just food and drink, we will highlight local culture through a rich array of programming that will breathe new life into this historic setting.”
“The Track 15 team has done a great job at bridging the past of Providence to current day and beyond, and we are honored to be included amongst some of Rhode Island’s best,” said Brandon Teachout, Chef/Owner, There, There. “This approach is very similar to how we craft our burgers and sandwiches at There, There – keeping the food objectively familiar but pushing the product forward with proper technique and a ton of respect for history. Rhode Island’s hospitality industry is going through an exciting time, and Track 15 is going to play an important role in changing the course of both hospitality and tourism – we are just excited our little burger joint gets to be involved.”
The overall development of the 18,000 square foot represents a $22 million investment in the restoration of the historic building which, when completed, will include a large central bar, a new home for seven Rhode Island based restaurateurs, indoor and outdoor seating for over 300 patrons, an entertainment venue and a 10,000 square foot plaza which will provide outdoor seating and a home for special events.
Rhode Island-based Vision 3 is the architect and Boston-based CM&B is the construction management firm, bringing to the project a wealth of experience in building food halls around the U.S.
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