Free the Food Trucks!

In the Boston Globe, Edward L. Glaeser, a professor of economics at Harvard University and director of the Rappaport Institute for Greater Boston, asks himself, “Why do food trucks matter?” and answers his own question:

“Cities work economic magic and entertain their citizens by connecting smart people, helping them to learn from one another and to innovate….Food trucks are a natural part of the innovative culinary process…Preserving the monopoly power of local eateries is a terrible reason to restrict food trucks.”

Subsitute the word “Atlanta” for the word “Boston, and you have it in a nutshell:

“As in many other areas, a one-stop permitting process that aims at providing speedy approval seems like a step forward. While I admire the Food Truck Challenge in City Hall Plaza to bring food trucks to scale, we should give up on micro-managing the location of every food truck. Instead, public spaces should be rented to food trucks, so the space will go to the truck that values it most. Food trucks can improve Boston’s streets and Boston’s palates ­ they just need to be free to do so.”

(photo of Mayor Thomas Menino from the Boston Globe)

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