Formed at the first part of the 17th century, and up to the mid of the 19th century it featured the Town Hall. At the crossroads of Tirgus and Skolas Streets, the oldest house (1646) in Ventspils is found. The marketplace is a popular shopping area for both locals and visitors.
Historically market place was great place of interest for researchers of ancient buildings and planning. Once it was considered as historic centre of the city Ventspils. Researcher of Ventspils historic centre Rita Zandberga (1929.-1993.) once thought that market place is formed in time period from 14th – 17th century. However, gradually looking through materials, that was saved in archives, she find out that market place is formed and market complex is build at the beginning of the 17th century, in time when medieval Ventspils already existed. That is the evidence that market place isn’t oldest part of the city.
2009. During year 2009 on market place were headed great reconstruction works and in December 5th were opened new market place. In reconstruction market place get new paving stone covering. In covering are marked location places of 18th century’s buildings and foundation lines; Were build special “Market well” with city armorial bearings.
Also, a special “Market well” with city coats of arms was built, creating an opportunity for tourists and other market visitors to use the water not only for drinking, but also to wash the fruits and vegetables bought at the market. In sunny weather, the well also acts as a sundial, while four lines extend from its base into the covering of the square, pointing to the four sides of the sky.
As main object in market place is bell tower with clock, that symbolize not – realized town councilor’s idea to set up main city clock in Town Hall tower. In new clock are integrated time and sound game. The clock has three dials and each of them show different information – Latvian time, lunar phases and week days. Each hour clock plays song’s “Pie dzintara jūras” (On Amber sea) melody but at 12:33 and 00:33 with song “Uz priekšu, Kurzeme” (Ahead Kurzeme) written by U. Marhilēvičs clock jingle Ventspils’ time. In bell tower are located interesting and attractive objects like big counting frame and sculptor’s Gļebs Panteļejevs exhibition of weight, capacity and measure.
Market place is reconstructed in frame of project “Reconstruction of Ventspils’ historical centre for tourism development” financed by European Regional Development Fund, Ventspils’ city budget and country budget.