At the 5th and Race streets parking lot across from Macys, 12 parking spaces are now reserved for the mobile restaurants. Five vendors set up shop facing Race Street late Monday morning.
So what can you get from the first five mobile food vans to take part in the new city pilot program? Practically a full meal from burgers and fries, to tacos, other kinds of Latin food to oven baked pizza, along with ice cream for dessert.
The city hopes to give downtown residents and visitors some more dining options. It won’t just be available during the week-day lunch hour, but around major events, weekend late nights and at other times when crowds are drawn downtown.
The city is making money off the operations charging $400 to $800 for a yearly permit in addition to the $185 food service license.
In addition to the licenses, each mobile food vendor must carry a $1 million insurance policy that also insures the city.
The owners of the mobile food operations say the pilot program arrangement is much better than hoping to get to a parking space in the morning
Mike Katz, owner of Cafe de Wheels tells 9 News, “We expect it to really add a lot of vitality to the area and offer diners some new options they’ve never had before. I am beginning to sense some excitement about about us being here.”
City officials say 10 mobile food vendors have gotten permits as of Monday.
In addition to finding them at 5th and Race Streets, also look for the mobile food vendors at the Court Street Market on Vine Street, the Kroger building and at Sawyer Point by the Purple People Bridge.
Have you tried any of the food? What do you think of the program? Let us know in the comment section below.