The great earthquake that struck central Chile in 1906 (8.2 Richter) lasted nearly 4 minutes and destroyed almost the entire city of Valparaiso. Many buildings collapsed and great fires ravaged the city. About 4,000 people were killed
and over 20,000 were injured. Among the tasks of reconstruction, the city assigned architect Eduardo Feureisen the design and construction of a new building to house the town’s main market. An essential requirement was that the new structure should withstand earthquakes.
The construction of the market began in 1907 and five years later the municipal authorities inaugurated the two-story building occupying an entire city block at the intersection of Brazil and Uruguay Avenues. The symmetric construction is based on steel beams and columns joined by bolts, similar to a meccano set.
On the first floor there are stalls selling fruits and vegetables and on the second floor there are numerous restaurants that offer inexpensive meals mostly based on typical Chilean cuisine rich in seafood products; take a look at the comments and pictures in this link
For over a century this place has been the main supply center for fruits and vegetables in the city. The market was owned and operated by the city until 1988 when it was acquired by the tenants. About 200 stalls operate in the market mostly for retail sales, however there are several dedicated to wholesale.
Each day, except Sundays, large crowds including sellers, buyers, visitors and tourists, come to this place causing serious traffic jams. The congestion is aggravated by lots of street vendors that take advantage of the large number of people coming to the market, to sell everything from vegetable seedlings to folk art.
To this date Cardonal Market has met the requirements of its design and construction. Since it opened in 1912, there have been no less than 5 major earthquakes in the region and, though the building has suffered some damage, it still remains almost intact.
The Market provides an excellent way to explore the commerce activity of the city, to buy local produce and seafood, and to enjoy restaurant meals at very reasonable prices.