There are these funny things called Food Trucks popping in quite literally every nook and cranny of downtowns. There are taco trucks, crepe trucks, ice cream trucks, pizza trucks, gyro trucks, chicken trucks, cupcake trucks…and so forth. What’s the ruckus with all the food trucks? Is it just a foodie fad that’ll breeze in and out of existence like Cappuccino-flavored potato chips? We don’t think so, and here’s why:

Mobility: Restaurant on wheels! Food trucks/trailers can go just about anywhere that there’s a road and parking lot. This makes them ideal for events – they can go where the crowd is rather than drawing the crowd to them.

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Low Start-Up Costs: Buying a truck or trailer is, most often, less costly that buying a building. Even the interior equipment of food trucks, though commercial-grade, is often less expensive than that of a full-fledged restaurant. Also, there’s less staff, less infill expenses (tables, chairs, menus, etc), and, because the food offerings are streamlined, less ingredients to keep on-hand. As a result, food truck owners are less likely to go into debt through the launching of their business – always a plus.

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Niche Product: Food trucks, being small one- or two-person units, don’t have the space to store ingredients for everything under the sun. Consequently, they often specialize in one type of food, thus they’re thematic and coincidentally usually pretty darn good at the thing they do. That also automatically targets their audience and manages customer expectations – if you go to a taco truck, you know you’ll end up getting some kind of Mexican food.

How does all this pertain to downtown Siloam Springs, you ask? Well, we’ve got food trucks! And it’s been a big topic of conversation in the city, because with the arrival of food trucks came the necessity for a food truck ordinance. That was a big, long project of research and collaboration, and you can now view the draft of the ordinance at the City of Siloam Springs’ website. Very cool. The main impetus of this ordinance is to help regulate the placement of food trucks, especially within the historic downtown district, so that they’re located in safe areas that don’t detract from the business of brick-and-mortar restaurants. So far, food trucks in Siloam Springs are located in the parking lot on the corner of East Alpine and Mount Olive Streets…conveniently close to the new office of Main Street Siloam Springs. Thanks to food trucks, we now have the addition of two different dining options in historic downtown Siloam Springs: Mexican food and Crepes.

Bon appetit!