A co-operative of traders could take over Wakefield Market Hall as alternative options to turning it into a cinema are considered.
Wakefield Council confirmed it held a meeting with traders where the idea was discussed as it consults on the future of the market.
The market will be bulldozed and turned into a multi-screen cinema under plans by the owners of the nearby Trinity Walk shopping centre.
Traders have gathered thousands of signatures on a petition against the plan.
David Dagger, Wakefield Council’s cabinet member for culture, said: “The council has a duty to consider the offer that it has received from the developer and this is what we are doing.
“The council leader recently met with some of the market traders to discuss the future of the market hall and whether other options such as a co-operative might be feasible.”
Kevin Trickett, president of Wakefield Civic Society, was among nine signatories to a letter calling for the council to try and keep the market going this week.
The letter said: “Wakefield has a long tradition of both indoor and outdoor markets and we think the city should look not to abandon but to re-establish that reputation by taking action to develop and improve the market hall.”
The letter called for the council to publish a report on alternative options for the market, which was designed by award-winning architect David Adjaye.
It said: “In a city with a proven track record of commissioning world-quality architecture like that of David Chipperfield’s The Hepworth Wakefield and the Yorkshire Sculpture Park Visitor Centre and Underground Gallery by Fielden Clegg Bradley, it would be extremely short-sighted now to rush to destroy the building.”
Coun Dagger said the council could not justify subsidising the market, which had struggled to attract shoppers.
He said: “We were very proud of the David Adjaye-designed market hall. However, it simply is not working as a market hall.”