Traverse City Record-Eagle

Our Views

December 24, 2013

Editorial: Food truck issue to get bigger test this summer

About this time last year the hottest wintertime issue was whether Traverse City should loosen its rules concerning food trucks.

Restaurant owners and downtown supporters said allowing food trucks to do business on city streets and parking lots was unfair to business owners who pay property taxes and pay for their buildings and to provide restrooms for patrons.

Food truck supporters argued the trucks would enhance the city’s growing reputation as a food destination and that city fees would help level the playing field.

In May the City Commission voted 5-to-2 to allow up to two mobile food vendors to operate year-round in four city parking lots and on State Street between Union and Pine streets.

The ordinance also allowed up to two trucks on some side streets and some of the city’s larger parks. Vendors were to pay $1,225 annually to park on city and private property, $725 for city property only, and $500 for private property only.

With the inaugural season now behind us, there doesn’t appear to have been a truck-ageddon. None of the worst appears to have come to pass. Given the brisk business many trucks experienced, however, it would be surprising if some eateries didn’t feel the heat.

A success story that pointed up the synergy some had hoped for was Little Fleet, a bar at the site of the former Jack’s Market east of downtown. The business welcomed food trucks to its lot, and as many as seven trucks used the site at any one time.

DDA director Rob Bacigalupi said the trucks there helped area businesses.

“Certainly, the food trucks at the Little Fleet have been great in generating traffic down on that end of town,” Bacigalupi said. “We’ve seen some of the businesses down there have extended their hours and they’re taking advantage of the traffic down there.”

Text Only

Twitter Updates
Follow us on twitter
Associated Press Video
Facebook Is Officially A Mobile Company 'Fifty Shades of Grey': Watch the Super Sexy First Trailer Now! Swiftair Loses Contact With Air Algerie Aircraft Diamond Stone, Malik Newman, Josh Jackson and others showcase talent Free Arturo - The World's Saddest Polar Bear A Look Back at Batman On Film Through The Years LeBron James -- Dropped $2k On Cupcake Apology ... Proceeds To Benefit Charity Snoop Dogg Says He Smoked Weed at the White House Raw: Fight Breaks Out in Ukraine Parliament Chris Pratt Interrupts Interview To French Braid Intern's Hair Shirtless Super Mario Balotelli Dances While Ironing - @TheBuzzeronFOX Whoa! Watch "Housewives" Star Do the Unthinkable LeBron apologizes to neighbors with cupcakes Justin Bieber In Calvin Klein Underwear Shoot Samsung Pre-Trolls The IPhone 6 With New Ad Jimmy Kimmel Introduces His Baby Girl Swim Daily, Nina Agdal in the Cook Islands Guilty Dog Apologizes to Baby for Stealing Her Toy Prince George Turns 1 and is Already a Trendsetter Train Collides With Semi Truck Carrying Lighter Fluid