WAMU 88.5 : News

Filed Under:

Alexandria Debates Opening Streets To Food Trucks

Food trucks can be found in D.C. and Arlington, but now some officials say Alexandria should be next to offer up mobile dining options.
Food trucks can be found in D.C. and Arlington, but now some officials say Alexandria should be next to offer up mobile dining options.

Leaders in Alexandria are about to consider a proposal that would open up the streets of Alexandria to food trucks. But like the fight over food trucks in other parts of the region, there are critics — and they say the plan is too broad.

The proposal on the docket for Saturday's public hearing would allow food trucks in most of the city, including residential streets 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. They would be prohibited from setting up in areas that have parking districts, and they would be restricted to certain areas of Old Town and Del Ray.

But during a recent meeting of the Planning Commission, Commissioner Stu Dunn said food trucks would have very few restrictions. "We have all kinds of restrictions on outdoor dining. Nothing on these," he said.

Supporters say food trucks create a sense of excitement and provide choice to consumers. "As someone who works in the District of Columbia and frequents them, I think that they have an impact on enlivening public space that we could take advantage of here," said Planning Commissioner Nate Macek.

Planning Commission Chairman Eric Wagner said city leaders have spent years protecting the old and historic district, so it would be a mistake to let a truck drive in with an eight-foot sign advertising pretzels.

"If I were a civic activist right now I would go home and call everybody in my neighborhood association, and I would gin up a tidal wave of opposition to this," he said.

City Council members have indicated they might scale back the proposal this weekend to and create a pilot program to have food trucks at farmers markets.

Similar debates over when and where food trucks should be able to operate took place in Arlington and D.C.


From 'Unproud' To 'Hombre,' Election 2016 Is Testing Our Vocabulary

Merriam-Webster noticed the number of unique words coming out of this campaign, and has been using Twitter to report the most searchable words. Lexicographer Peter Sokolowski talks to Rachel Martin.

A History Of Election Cake And Why Bakers Want To #MakeAmericaCakeAgain

Bakers Susannah Gebhart and Maia Surdam are reviving election cake: a boozy, dense fruitcake that was a way for women to participate in the democratic process before they had the right to vote.

Republican And Trump Critic Ana Navarro Speaks On Election

Ana Navarro has become a standard bearer for Republican women repudiating Donald Trump. NPR's Rachel Martin speaks with the GOP strategist about her view of the election, which is only 16 days away.

The Next Generation Of Local, Low-Power FM Stations Expands In Urban Areas

The next wave of low power FM stations is coming on the air. Initially restricted to rural areas because of interference concerns, nearly 2,000 new stations have been approved — many in urban areas.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.