Architectural Design Of A Farmers’ Market At Onitsha, Anambra State

Project and Seminar Material for Architecture

Architectural Design Of A Farmers’ Market At Onitsha, Anambra State


“Market” is an area or setting in which price making forces (demand and supply) operates. Marketing performs the role of bridging special geographical gap by making sure that goods and services are moved from the point of production to the point of consumption. Agricultural marketing is an essential tool for development yet, farmers suffer from a number of difficulties that reduces their bargaining power, as they are deprived of getting the right price for their products. Data was sourced from a total of six cases, including three local and three Foreign.

Architectural Data collected was analysed and used in the production of the Architectural design of a Farmer’s Market in Onitsha, Anambra State. Findings revealed that marketing involves several intermediary stages within the process. This often results in the consumer paying an exorbitant price and the producer receiving a lower price for his production. The marketing activity is obstructed by lack of sufficient fund, high cost of transportation, lacking market infrastructures, with little or no aid from government.

Efficiency of marketing the crops was determined and problems identified through the movement of produce from producers, through the chain of actors in the markets. With the availability of a Place just for Agricultural produce marketing, there would be a reasonable encouragement to the farmers to display their produce, though they wouldn’t sell as vendors but they will be massive distributors to the market. Therefore, increasing the availability of home-grown foodstuff in Onitsha and the Nation at large. This design answers to the issues experienced in our regular markets, it offers a solution to Congestion of people, vehicular traffic, fire outbreaks, and security. It offers a properly zoned market area.

Table Of Contents

Preliminary Page(s)

  • Title
  • Declaration
  • Approval
  • Dedication
  • Acknowledgement
  • Abstract
  • Table of Content

Chapter One


  • 1.1 Background to the study
  • 1.2 Statement of Architectural Problem
  • 1.3 Aim of the Study
  • 1.4 Objectives of the Study
  • 1.5 Significance of the Project
  • 1.6 Scope of Work
  • 1.7 Research methodology
  • 1.8 Limitation of the Study
  • 1.9 Study Area

Chapter Two

Literature Review

  • 2.1 Conceptual issues
  • 2.2 Development of Agricultural produce marketing in Onitsha
  • 2.3 Nigerian development in area of Agriculture
  • 2.4 Case studies
  • 2.5 World development in Agricultural produce marketing
  • 2.6 Implications for the design – Ideal Concept

Chapter Three

General Planning Principle

  • 3.1 The Brief
  • 3.2 Literature Review
  • 3.3 Schedule of spaces
  • 3.4 Zoning
  • 3.5 Bubble diagram

Chapter Four

Presentation Of Analysis

  • 4.1 Site Selection Criteria
  • 4.2 Site Options
  • 4.3 Site options evaluation criteria
  • 4.4 Design consideration
  • 4.5 Physical site analysis
  • 4.6 Construction, materials, and finishes analysis

Chapter Five

Design Synthesis

  • 5.1 Design concept
  • 5.2 Massing and form Concept
  • 5.3 Conclusion
  • References

Chapter One


1.1 Background To The Study

Market as an institution for the exchange of goods and services, is as old as mankind. Record from the earliest civilization shows that trading in both local and foreign markets has been part of life. The earliest form of market was based on trading by barter. However, with the introduction of money as a means of exchange, commercial codes were developed, which ultimately led to modern national and international trade. Market plays a vital role in any society as an exchange mechanism and with socio-political life of the people. The market is an essential part in the chain of commodity distribution. Market serves as a mechanism of information, ranging from local, national and international levels (Arena, 1998).

The Nigerian National Commission on Agriculture defines agricultural marketing as “ A process which starts with a decision to produce a saleable farm commodity and it involves all aspects of market structure and systems both functional and institutional, based on pre-harvest and post-harvest operations, assembling, grading, storage, transportation and distribution ” (Agricultural Marketing Resource Centre, 2007). In the past, agricultural marketing basically involved the buying and selling of agricultural produce, when the society’ economy was more or less self-sufficient, and farmer sold their produce to the consumer directly on a cash or barter basis. But in recent times, marketing of agricultural produce is different in modern marketing;Produce has to undergo a series of transfers or exchanges from one hand to another before it finally reaches the consumer. Hence, agricultural marketing ensures the supply and distribution of farm produce and inputs. For a market to attain a refined level of satisfaction, it should have adequate and accurate information about the supply and demand situation that is needed and necessary, if the products are to be moved to the place desired, at the proper time, in the desired form and at the appropriate price commensurate with the value of the product and or services.

But with the growing population of man, which is evidently seen in Onitsha, as at 2016 it had an estimated urban population of 7,425,000 people. Demand is on the increase,to strive in a commercial location the agriculture market will become a commercial character, as the farmer grows crops that fetch better prices. Marketing of agricultural produce is an integral part of the economy since a farmer is encouraged to make more investment and to increase production. Thus, there is an increasing awareness that it is not enough to produce a crop or animal product; it must be marketed as well. As a result, the crop production pattern is no longer based only on what the farmer needs for personal consumption but also what is in high demand and that fetches more return for them. Ultimately, prices of agricultural produce provide the signal by which farmers reduce or increase their output. This goes in line with the view of Adekeye and Dizzoh (1985) who observed that “improvement in agricultural productivity and living standards of small scale farmers are largely determined by the marketing systems in which they operate.”

The prices of agricultural produceis affected by characteristics and organization of the market in terms of structures, infrastructures, taxes, financing, information, rainfall variability, to mention a few. There is a need therefore to design better infrastructures for the marketing of agricultural produce.

1.2 Statement Of Architectural Problem

Everyone would love to have a healthy meal and fresh fruits, but there are discouraging thoughts that comes to mind, whenever we plan to go to the market to buy agricultural produce. These thoughts are the problem associated with majority of the Markets all over Nigeria. They include the congestion of people (human traffic), parking space (vehicular traffic), the nooks and crannies of the market (narrow footpath), thermal discomfort for the vendors, space for mass delivery of goods tends to be problematic, and the risk of fire outbreak.

1.3 Aim Of The Study

To encourage the production and consumption of homegrown agricultural produce.

1.4 Objectives Of The Study

The objectives that will be initiated to achieve the said aim includes:

  1. To provide stalls for the sales of farm produce.
  2. Fireproofing of stalls to improve the fire safety measures.
  3. Provision of different types of stall, with different rent prices.
  4. Provision of open space for auxiliary traders.
  5. The market will be open to everyone, but only 6 days a week, with a time frame for opening and closing.
  6. Provision of sufficient walkways through the market area.
  7. Provision of car park to tackle vehicular traffic, with specified routes for trailers and personal cars.

1.5 Significance Of The Project

This project would create a market that would have the answer to congestion, where farmers would be confident to sell their agricultural produce, hence encouraging the participation of individuals in the agriculture sector of the state and country at large. Ultimately providing more revenue for Anambra State Government.

1.6 Scope Of Work

The project area is heavily populated (Onitsha), to control the influx of people into the market area would be important. Therefore the scope of work would be inclined to providing spaces, and facilities that will aid in welcoming people (both sellers and buyers) and giving them a homely experience, a taste of the future market.

These includes:

  1. Administrative building.
  2. General Hall (For meeting and Prayers).
  3. Eatery.
  4. Inspection and Examination chamber.
  5. General Hall: for meeting and prayer.
  6. Poultry.
  7. Ware house
  8. Security Post.
  9. Auxiliary Traders zone
  10. Trailer park and circulation.
  11. Trolleys / wheelbarrow area.
  12. Delivery area.
  13. Parking lots
  14. Convenience

1.7 Research Methodology

Under research methodology there are two board types, namely Qualitative and Quantitative research methods.
Qualitative methods: Different sources were used while collecting the data used for this research purpose, though this method can be further classified into two:

Primary Sources:

This is the collection of first-hand information or data. By obtaining information from a direct source which will constitute the following:

  1. Interviews with sellers in the marketplace.
  2. Undertaking case study on existing markets.
  3. Visitation and studies of proposed site for the project.
  4. Analysis and synthesis of gotten information, discovering the strengths and weaknesses of the existing agricultural market around.
Secondary Sources:

This is the collection of second-hand information or data. By the use of indirect sources which includes:

  1. Published and unpublished materials concerning the project.
  2. Architectural books – Metric Handbook, Architects’ Data.
  3. Use of the internet to understand more about the project topic.

1.8 Limitations Of The Study

Every project faces one challenge or the other, while discovering the truth behind the success or failures of that same facility that exists. Some limitations to this study are not having access to vital information such as the year of establishment of the market on which case studies were carried out, unwillingness of some the traders to tell information on how their business ran, effective case studies would best be carried out on markets that are of high standard, but a good number of case studies only had gave negative deductions.

1.9 Study Area

The location of this site is in Onitsha, Anambra state, Nigeria, Western Africa. Onitsha is divided into Onitsha North and Onitsha South, the project is prepared for Onitsha South LGA. Onitsha slowly grew into an important trading port for the “Royal Niger Company” in the mid-1850s. Trade in Palm Kernels, Palm Oil and other cash crops increased at this region in the 19th century.

From the 1900’s Onitsha has been a centre for Agriculture produce marketing. Therefore, it is no surprise that a Farmers’ market would be a fitting facility to be situated there.

Chapter Five

Design Synthesis

5.1 Design Concept

According to White (1979), as cited by Uji (2002) in his book “evolution of design thought”, concept formulation is basically the process of obtaining an explicable vocabulary of architecture forms and objective of the client as sought to be represented by the building. White (1979) considers a concept as the primary generator, the central theme and further notes that a concept is any of or all of these:

  1. An initial generalized idea held to be interpretation of the problem
  2. A mental image resulting from or formed out of perception and analysis of the problems and contracted to represent the building morphology.
  3. The development of organizational pattern for design program begins with the observation of the characteristic activity of user.

He further stated that the physical design is generally the result of a combination of the three concepts:

  1. The characteristics of the construction site; its shape, topography; the surrounding environment; accessibility etc leads to specific design form.
  2. The use of the functions of the structure as form generators.
  3. Accommodating the programme in arbitrarily pre-determined spatial forms.

Uji stressed that concept is a broad principle affecting perception and behaviour, a broad abstract idea or a guiding general behaves or how nature, reality or events are perceived. A school setting he continued can be compared to a community, a place for learning such as the vocational centre should aim to provide opportunities of adult learning and communal activities and for the users to learn to live in groups other than families. The safety of the youth and learning in a calm controlled atmosphere must be a major factor in the design of learning spaces

5.2 Massing And Form Concept

Architecture massing is the act of composing and manipulating three-dimension forms into a unified, coherent architecture configuration. During this process, the relations among massing elements are studied; this include the relation of the building with its surrounding context and of the building with its sub-part. Massing comprises all decision affecting external architecture form. Ching (1979).

The idea of the designer is not to see the form of the building in its totality as a sculptural piece; instead the form of the building will be divided from the functional relationship and area requirement of the various space which will be dictated by the conditions of the proposed site. In this design, there are two (2) major determinations, namely

  1. General form
  2. Institutional form
1. General Form:

The use of simple structure from that the student will adapt easily to be able to relate with something as close to home as possible.

2. Institutional Form:

They are mainly simple plan clearly zoned and arranged around open courtyard. Walkways linked to one another accessible to outdoor activity spaces and encourage the blending with the landscape.

5.3 Conclusions

The congestion and pressures on our market especially here in Onitsha, needs to be eased by creation of new market and pressure points instead of suppressing everything in one place. Though, the market sticks to the traditional mode of trade, new facilities and surveillance systems have been put in place in order the manage and control the activities of the market without the consciousness of the users so as to curtail theft and increase the security of the market area.

The practice of crop production and animal husbandry are encouraged, being that this Farmers’ Market promote the sales of such. Hence even the youths are encouraged to work on the farm being that they are assured that they have a place where these produce can be marketed. With the agricultural tilt in the Nation’s Economy, there is every need for a Farmer’ Market. Without any hesitation, the Government of this great State would embark on this work. Being that in the long-run, the state would start gaining revenue from this vice.

Starting from Onitsha right round the entire state, there would be bubbling improve in health quality because of the constant availability of fresh fruits and vegetation, which is paramount for healthy living. Thereby, reducing net cost spent in hospitals and health care facilities.

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