Opinion Your Views — 03 April 2014
Food truck hysteria is nonsense

By Michael Ford, Alexandria
(File Photo)

To the editor:

Allow me to address the idea that food trucks would replace restaurants on King Street: It’s a ridiculous notion.

If my wife wanted to go out to dinner and I suggested a food truck, it would result in a comedy of errors on the level of “The Honeymooners.” No one, and I mean no one, who is looking forward to a nice, quiet evening of enjoying wine and appetizers in a relaxing atmosphere is going to throw the anchor out of the window at the first sight of a food truck.

Nobody says, “Hey, I know we got dressed up and want to sit down without listening to motorcycles and car horns while breathing exhaust, but let’s eat while sitting on the curb.” If food trucks were driving restaurants out of the area, then Los Angeles, San Diego, Arlington and D.C. would offer nothing but food trucks.

Look, I’m not saying let these food trucks park right in front of a brick-and-mortar restaurant. I would not even argue for letting them park along King Street (which already is too crowded on a Friday night) when they could park down by Oronoco Bay Park or another spot with a view.

I think the hysteria-laced prognostication that they will move in like the aliens in “Independence Day” is just untrue. We are missing out on a growing trend, one that has a lot of diversity to offer, because of some ancient prejudices and unfounded fears. I think there is room for both and each can complement the other.

How many Thai places do we have on King Street? How many Italian restaurants? How many seafood joints? Are they waging open warfare in the streets for customers?

Alexandria is more than just King Street and I know of some food trucks that I would drive to eat at instead of going to several of the eateries in Old Town that I can reach on foot. Any brick and mortar that gets put out of action by a food truck may deserve it.

 

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