Some mid-Michigan communities looking to food trucks to jumpstart local commerce

Published: Apr. 28, 2021 at 10:53 PM EDT
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LANSING, Mich. (WILX) - After a year of tight restrictions and empty downtown areas, communities in mid-Michigan are ready to welcome back people to enjoy what the area has to offer. One way they’re doing that is rolling in food trucks.

Areas like Delhi Township and Jackson are looking to bolster the food truck community.

Jackson City Councilman Freddie Dancy said, “I expect it to be a good year for food trucks. Not just in Jackson but everywhere.”

Jackson has approved the revival of Food Truck Tuesdays after taking a year off. Delhi Township also gave the thumbs up to food trucks starting May 1. Food truck owners say even though they’re highly sought after, it’s extremely difficult for these entrepreneurs to find a place to set up shop.

Mi Vegan owner Michael Graham said, “There’s different permits you have to get, pre-inspections, the townships, the counties-- I mean there’s so much that you can’t just set up if somebody wants to do an event and things.”

Delhi Township released a map which shows areas where approved vendors can work. They’re allowed to operate on public or commercial property so long as they ensure parking is available, they don’t block driveways or emergency vehicles, remove their trash daily and are able to operate four days a week for at least four hours.

People like Maria Sotelo, owner of Maria’s Cuisine Mexican Food, are excited cities are starting to recognize and help out food trucks.

“It feels good,” Sotelo said. “Because you know you have somebody behind you.”

Graham said, “A lot of times it’s the communities that own the food trucks so people want to support people that actually live in their community with the food trucks. So, it’s pretty cool.”

Jackson and Delhi Township say they’re utilizing the food truck services as a way to bolster the downtown atmosphere with the hope of attracting more business.

Each food trucks will need to apply for a permit with their respective cities or townships. Delhi township says it will be a first come first serve operation for approval there.

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