The results are in: Local consumers are hungry for food trucks downtown
Results from a survey released this week by the City of Rochester show overwhelming support for allowing food trucks to operate downtown.
How do you feel about allowing food trucks in Downtown Rochester?
Of the 1,800-plus responses received by the city, 86 percent of people said they live in Rochester or in the surrounding area. About 10 percent of respondents purported to be business owners; another 33 percent identified themselves as downtown employees.
More than 90 percent of respondents said they have a "very favorable" or "somewhat favorable" opinion of allowing food trucks downtown. Just 5 percent viewed the idea unfavorably.
When asked whether they would visit food trucks downtown, 92 percent of voters said they would do so if the rules changed. About 75 percent of those who answered "yes" said they would patronize the businesses at least twice a month.
The survey results also show strong support for requiring food trucks to pay for the right to operate downtown. About 85 percent of respondents said trucks should be required to obtain an annual permit; 62 percent said operators should pay Downtown Special Service District taxes and fees, just like traditional brick and mortar businesses.
It should come as no surprise that the highest demand for food trucks is during the lunch hour. However, the survey also shows support for service during breakfast, dinner and late-night hours.
There was no separate data for downtown business owners, many of whom support the city's existing restrictions on mobile food vendors.
The city council is expected to discuss the results of the survey at a meeting later this month. Council member Michael Wojcik has pledged to introduce a revised ordinance at some point this year.
Complete results from the survey can be found here.
(Cover graphic: The Med City Beat)