Opportunity Awaits For Foodie Entrepreneurs At Foot of Bridge In Nyack And Tarrytown
By Tina Traster
You’ve got less than three weeks to compete for a spot for a food truck or farmer’s market stall at the foot of the Tappan Zee (Governor Mario M. Cuomo Bridge).
New York State officials have issued a “Request for Expressions of Interest” for those who’d like to set up food operations at the Westchester and Rockland landings.
The RFEI is available for download at the New NY Bridge project website. Responses are due by March 31. The 3.6-mile bike/walking path is slated to open this summer.
Food trucks and stalls, along with art, interactive displays, restrooms and parking, are all part of New York’s hope that the “Shared Use Path” will be a tourist draw that stimulates the local economy and brings visitors to the river towns and beyond.
The Walkway Over the Hudson State Historic Park, the world’s longest elevated pedestrian bridge that spans 1.28 miles over the Hudson River in upstate New York, has helped transform Poughkeepsie and Highland. It has attracted millions of tourists and locals with outdoor movies, entertainment, food/ice cream, moonlight walks and other events.
Food trucks have become big business. Food truck industry generates more than $2 billion in annual sales. Traditional restaurants experience 2% growth, while food trucks have experienced 7.3% growth annually since 2007. Average food truck startup cost is around $100K. Average cost for a food truck is $85k. Revenue from food carts reached $2.7 billion in 2017, according to a U.S. Chamber of Commerce study.
According to an IBISWorld report, the food truck industry alone is projected to hit $1.1 billion in 2022. Once a novelty, the food truck industry has broadened to include everything from tacos and waffles to pizza and baked goods. There have always been food vendors but the food truck gained strength about a decade ago in response to the recession. It is easier to secure start-up capital for a truck or cart than a restaurant. And as we head into uncertain financial times, food trucks may continue to look like a good investment.
From empty lots, alleyways and vacant buildings to parks, waterfronts and plazas, many cities have created “shared mobile food experiences.”
A good example of a burgeoning food truck “colony” is visible along I-95 in West Haven, Ct at Long Wharf Drive where a long line of food trucks serve up an eclectic array of Mexican, Puerto Rican, Central, and South American specialties.
New York State is looking for local merchants and Taste NY Farm Market participants.
“A world-class bridge deserves world-class services,” Thruway Authority Executive Director Matthew J. Driscoll said. “As we prepare to open the shared use path on the Governor Mario M. Cuomo Bridge, we want to able to provide visitors the finest products and most convenient services that New York State has to offer.”
Preference will be given to local merchants and Taste NY Farm Market participants. Applications should include details about operational and logistical components.
The Westchester Landing, located off South Broadway in Tarrytown, has two truck stalls, suitable for food trucks or mobile bike rental/repair stations. Each stall has access to electric outlets. Additionally, the landing’s plaza includes space for two pop-up tents.
The Rockland Landing, located within Interchange 10 of the New York State Thruway in South Nyack, features a truck stall with access to electric outlets. The landing also includes space for two pop-up tents adjacent to the bicycle/walking path.