Say no to food trucks.
That was the message from nearly everyone who spoke tonight from a crowd of about 80 who turned out for a Traverse City Downtown Development Authority study session on where to allow mobile food units in downtown Traverse City — if anywhere.
The city commission had asked the DDA to weigh in on where it feels food trucks and other portable food vendors should be located, though it’s still up to the city to make a final decision on if food trucks will be allowed in the city and, if so, under what parameters. DDA board members had decided to seek public opinion. In the meantime, a recommendation has been drafted by some DDA board members that would prohibit mobile food units along Front Street between Boardman and Union, and within 20 feet of any intersection.
Most who spoke — many downtown restaurant owners — echoed the sentiments of Peter Makin, owner of Brilliant Books downtown. He said food trucks tend to operate only in the summer and take business away from brick and mortar eateries that pay hefty costs to stay in business and rely on higher summer volume to survive in the off season.
Bruce Rogers, longtime downtown Traverse City businessman and property owner, said it would be a mistake to ban food trucks. Instead, he recommended, they should be concentrated in an area near the river — a concept he said he saw work in a European city similar to Traverse City that was not only successful in its own right, but enhanced customer traffic for the entire business community.
Simon Joseph, owner of the Roaming Harvest food truck with commercial space at 2819 Cass, said allowing food trucks gives entrepreneurs a chance to develop their products and brand before taking the leap into a fixed location. He’s also involved in a group called TC Street Food, which has garnered more than 600 “Likes” on Facebook since the page was launched in late January. A petition favoring food trucks downtown has also garnered more than 500 signatures.
After the public comments, DDA Board Chair Stephen Constantin asked for permission to work with fellow board member Chuck Judson and DDA staff to draft some alternative recommendations. The DDA meets Friday morning at 8 a.m. at the Governmental Center and will take up the issue then.
Look for an updated report in Thursday’s print edition and online at www.record-eagle.com.
Say no to food trucks.
UPDATE: Mikko resigns as president of soccer referee assocation
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Clearing the Record: 07/31/2014
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Film Festival Schedule: 07/31/2014
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Step in line for 'just great movies'
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New candidate hopes young voters weigh in
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Two candidates for the 104th state House seat already served Grand Traverse County as county commissioners. Now Republicans Robert Hentshel and Larry Inman are both vying to represent the county in Lansing.Continued ...
June retail strong
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The film panel goes political
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Film Festival Outtakes: 07/31/2014
Clay artist Phil Wilson cut away peel from the fruit on a giant (by claymation standards) banana that accidentally had been crushed in production. “The giant banana needs tentacles.”Continued ...
Elmwood Township man arraigned on child pornography charges
An Elmwood Township man remains behind bars on accusations he sent child pornography over a computer file-sharing network.Continued ...
Mikko resigns as Grand Traverse soccer group president
The president of the Grand Traverse Area Soccer Officials Association will resign after he lost his license to practice law because he possessed nude images of teenage girls.Continued ...
Burritt's helps with Kids Fest hot dog crisis
It's a problem of foot-long proportions, a missing link just a week before the Film Festival.Continued ...
Whitewater fire cause undetermined
Investigators still haven't found what kindled a fire that destroyed a vacant Whitewater Township farmhouse.Continued ...
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Beach Bums cleared of withholding fundraiser money
Authorities cleared the Traverse City Beach Bums baseball organization of allegations that the team illegally failed to distribute fundraiser money meant to be donated to the Grand Traverse Area Veterans Coalition.Continued ...
Food for the film-weary
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- Tuesday, July 29, 2014
Film Fest Kicks Off With the Bite
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Grand Traverse County board to meet
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Deputies' union rep leaves loaded gun in bathroom
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Film Festival Schedule: 07/30/2014
What's happening Wednesday at the Traverse City Film Festival:Continued ...
Film Festival Outtakes: 07/30/2014
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Old city manager signed off on splash pad changes
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City clerk: I made a mistake
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- UPDATE: Mikko resigns as president of soccer referee assocation