Holly Whyte wrote in The Social Life of Small Urban Spaces, “If you want to seed a place with activity, put out food…Food attracts people who attract more people.” Mobile food carts often act as temporary destinations and gathering places for the culinarily curious; they also increase the number of reasons that people have to spend time in a place. From festivals to policy changes, food carts had a busy month across the country.
– As evidence of their popularity, the 2nd Annual LA Street Food Fest was mobbed this past month. On top of two hour lines to get into the event, you had to wait an additional two hours at some of the more talked about trucks.
– Also in LA, Food carts act as essential components of community events all over the city with multiple carts acting as mobile food courts at events downtown.
– Places like Roanoke, VA are in the process of drafting local legislation that would allow food carts and encourage them to cluster, as long as they don’t step on the toes of brick and mortar establishments.
– This year, Pepsi decided to forego Super Bowl advertising in favor of providing community grants and asked the public to vote on which ideas they think most deserve the support. One idea in the running is to take the NYC Vendy Awards, which celebrates the best of New York’s food vendors, nationwide.