51_coxe_food_truck_lot_2014Asheville’s first food truck lot has been rebranded and is preparing to add some new amenities after a disagreement last month that led to some local food truck operators to stop setting up shop at the Coxe Avenue spot.

Both sides offered their own proposals during a series of negotiations that eventually led to the announcement by the Asheville Street Food Coalition. I recently spoke to Susan McDonald Robinson, who took over management of the lot on Oct. 1, to hear about what’s next.

The food truck lot, known as The Lot, has been rennamed 51 Coxe. Robinson said she plans to fix up the little building on the lot at 51 Coxe Ave. (a former used car lot), and install a new bathroom and commissary. The bathroom will allow her to install more permanent seating for patrons of the lot, she said.

Robinson said she also plans to add a small bar in the building.

“We want to support the food truck culture in Asheville,” said Robinson, who many local residents may know from her years spent as fitness director at the YWCA of Asheville.

“We want to support local entrepreneurs. We want to provide income and opportunity for our community, and we want to work with them and have them prosper. I regret that there’s been so much conflict and I wish we could have found a way to work together with the food truck coalition,” she said.

Robinson said she negotiated with the group in good faith during talks starting back in February. She said she never threatened to close down the food truck lot and she said she gave the truck owners plenty of notice about the change in management.

“They were looking out for their interests and we were looking out for ours,” she said. “Unfortunately, we didn’t see eye to eye.”

Robinson said the infrastructure changes are scheduled to be installed in the spring, with a planned April grand opening. She’s thinking about doing a Friday food truck rally and continue to invite new operators.

“I’m excited about the development of the South Slope, and we’re excited to be here,” she said.

51 Coxe on Twitter.

12 Comments

  1. I wish the food trucks would use their mobility and come to places where decent food is in need. There are plenty of great places to go already downtown. Come to East Asheville FFS…

    • For some reason East AVL is trendy to hate on. I doubt the trucks will ever come here en masse.

      There are a few trucks I can think of though. A taco truck that parks at The Root Bar, the coffee truck near the intersection of Tunnel & Swannanoa and the food truck at Home Depot.

      The first food truck I ever ate from was Perry’s BBQ that used to park by Farside Farms and the go kart track back in the 90’s.

      • Highland Brewing will get some food trucks, and when the East AVL farmers market is happening they’ve taken to having one food truck on hand as well. The problem with this part of town is that there just aren’t that many spots that are both good for attracting customers and friendly to food trucks.

      • Yeah, we really like the taco truck. I’m happy to host food trucks at my house.
        😉

    • Give Joshua some business at his coffee truck next to Haw Creek Animal Hospital. Not only is his coffee great, he’s sure to brighten your day. I too encourage more food in the East.

  2. -“Robinson, who many local residents may know from her years spent as fitness director at the YWCA of Asheville.”
    excellent another “qualified” person trying to cash in on a scene they have no experience with.
    It’s like all the people trying to come up with any business to get into the beer game because it’s the hot trend.
    It’s getting tired people…

    • It really is their concern, no sideline spectators. You put $ in the game and you take your chances. No $, just yappin.

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