Food truck grub may soon find a more stationary home in Ferndale. Oakland County 115 reports that the owner of the Delectabowl food truck, Aaron Tye, is looking to replace the (still open) Wing Hing Inn with a restaurant and food truck park called Detroit Fleat.
The project was presented before the Ferndale Planning Commission this week. It would include renovations of the Chinese restaurant as well as outdoor seating, dedicated parking lot space for five food trucks, and a food storage garage. While Tye did not identify the potential food truck partners, the year-round restaurant will offer lunch and dinner.
Food trucks require a much lower price of entry for new food businesses in comparison to a brick-and-mortar restaurants, but in regions like Detroit where the format is relatively new it can be difficult to navigate complex and sometimes outdated municipal regulations. Vendors sometimes have trouble finding a reliable location to park their businesses, which can be a problem when you’re trying to attract regular customers.
In the same way that food halls have grown popular across the U.S., food truck parks offer opportunities for groups of small vendors to band together and share space in a more permanent location. The parks in some cities like Austin, Texas, have even become tourist attractions offering diners a variety of meal options in a small area with shared seating.
Eater has reached out for more details on Detroit Fleat. The hybrid food truck park-restaurant is projected to debut this summer.
In Detroit, some parts of the city are making moves to add new space for mobile restaurants. In addition to a flagship year-round restaurant, the forthcoming DTE Energy Park in downtown Detroit is expected to provide some much-needed new food truck parking space. A pilot program also recently proposed a new pedestrian friendly intersection at the confluence of Gratiot, Macomb, Randolph, and Broadway in downtown which would provide space for food trucks.
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