TYLER, Texas (KETK) - Last year, the food truck industry was worth $1.3 billion and it's still showing signs of growth. In the restaurant industry, they've become all the rage and the city of Tyler is looking to jump on board with its first Tyler Food Truck Park.
"We think it's a great location for that type of activity," said Kyle Kingma, City of Tyler Planning Manager.
At the intersection of East Elm Street and South Center Avenue in downtown Tyler, a plot of land caught criminal defense attorney Carlo D'Angelo's eye.
"I was looking for some office space and in my journey, I found this vacant lot downtown Tyler and my wheels started turning," said D'Angelo.
He said it was an entrepreneurial opportunity he couldn't pass up.
"By having a venue where we can have a park setting, with a picnic pavilion with a cantina bar that will serve alcohol and a stage for music and entertainment. We hope to attract good quality, gourmet food trucks," said D'Angelo.
There will also be a commercial kitchen where D'Angelo, who is a chef himself, will be serving up his own gourmet French fries.
"While we've been thinking about doing an Italian concept on the park, we think that a simple, straight ahead concept with elevated gourmet French fries will be a real home run down here," he said.
The first phase will open in the fall and include an eating pavilion and space for two to four food trucks. Phase two will add the commercial kitchen, cantina, fire pit and stage.
No parking will be available, but that's by design.
"The downtown is meant to be suitable for walk ability. We think this proposal will help encourage that," said Kingma.
"I think that this is an essential component in the formula for making downtown a viable place for millennials to come," he said. "I see that there is a lot of interest in the downtown area and I think that our timing is right now to really strike and make this a destination spot."