First Coast Connect: DVI’s Terry Lorince talks food trucks

Photo by Brett Oakes
Food truck open for business during February’s First Wednesday Art Walk. Photo by Brett Oakes.

The conversation of food trucks’ place in Jacksonville – more specifically, the urban core – heated up once again this week in response to proposed legislation that would limit food trucks throughout the city.

The legislation, proposed by City Councilman Reggie Brown, would prohibit food trucks from operating near city parks, certain residential areas and between the hours of midnight and 6 a.m., among other potentially truck-crippling stipulations.

While DVI is thrilled to hear this conversation shine a light on efforts to boost Downtown’s urban vitality, DVI recognizes this is a sensitive topic for competing brick-and-mortar restauranteurs and food-truck operators.

Today, WJCT’s Melissa Ross invited DVI’s executive director, Terry Lorince, to share her thoughts on Ross’s weekday morning show, First Coast Connect.

“We really need to pay attention to the vibrancy that these foods trucks bring to Downtown and that vibrancy and its ability to attract other businesses that want to locate Downtown,” Lorince said in the interview. “And I don’t mean food trucks, I mean that companies are going to want to come down here, bring more employees down here, because of an added vibrancy.”

Lorince also spoke on what she thinks concerned restauranteurs are looking for:

“I think what they’re really looking for is they’re looking for predictability,” she said. “They want to know what the rules are, they want to know how to play [by those rules], they want to know how many food trucks can come, and they’re also looking for communication.”

She continued:

“There needs to be a dialogue with the City Council, the mayor’s office, restauranteurs and food trucks sitting down, and competing interests talking with each other.”

first_coast_connect_logo_01Listen in to the full interview with Terry Lorince, along with Dale Stoudt of Jax Truckies, here.

DVI released a survey to gauge Downtown stakeholders’ thoughts on food trucks. If you haven’t yet, please take five minutes to complete the four-question survey.