Carlisle considering a food truck pilot program

Carlisle/West Shore

CARLISLE, Pa. (WHTM) – Carlisle wants to bring more people downtown, so it’s considering adding food trucks as an option for patrons.

But the idea has been controversial in the borough before.

Local businesses were recently given surveys to share feedback on the idea of food trucks.

“Having starting out as basically a food truck ourselves, I wouldn’t be able to be where I am now had I not worked there,” said Nick Mauldin, the owner of Redd’s Smokehouse Barbeque.

Mauldin says he’d welcome food trucks.

“I think it’s good for business. I think it’ll bring more foot traffic downtown,” said Mauldin.

Carlisle leaders are currently putting together a proposal for a pilot program to present to the borough council on July 31.

Planners are still working out the details with police and fire, so they haven’t decided exactly how many food trucks they’d like to add.

“Probably at one specific location,” said Susan D. Armstrong, the interim borough manager. “We’re most interested in the square area and those apparatus that could be easily unhooked from a vehicle and placed onto a sidewalk.”

That means you likely won’t be seeing a full kitchen on wheels in Carlisle just yet.

The borough also says it would like to limit vendors to different times or days when some restaurants may be closed, like Sundays and Mondays.

The borough also considered allowing food trucks in 2014, but received a lot of pushback from local businesses.

“We didn’t have the number of businesses in the downtown at the time,” said Armstrong. “We wanted to support the bricks and mortar.”

Borough leaders say the public will get to give feedback on the idea.

“I think that if you do it right, competition just makes you better,” said Mauldin.

The council ultimately will make the decision about food trucks, so a timeline is still to be determined.

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