February 14, 2003

Collegetown Org. Hears Concerns Over Hot Truck

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The Collegetown Neighborhood Council (CNC) convened yesterday afternoon to discuss a number of issues, including a possible temporary relocation of the Hot Truck to Collegetown.

Construction

The potential impact of the West Campus Initiative construction on the Hot Truck’s business was one of the topics discussed. Some attendees were concerned that, if left on Stewart Avenue during West Campus construction, the Hot Truck would lose business. Albert Smith, owner of ShortStop Deli in Collegetown and operator of the Hot Truck, proposed stationing the late-night food truck on College Avenue in front of the Sheldon Court dormitories.

“The Hot Truck will not survive the West Campus construction if left on Stewart Avenue,” Smith said in his proposal to the council.

While the council maintains no authority to allow the truck to operate in Collegetown, members of the council responded to Smith’s statement, offering concerns and suggestions.

Mike Barry, program director at Noyes Community Center, predicted that West Campus residents would respond in a disgruntled manner to a relocation of the Hot Truck.

Other members of the CNC added that the phased plan of West Campus destruction and construction would not significantly interfere with Hot Truck patronage, as many students would continue to reside on West Campus during the construction process.

Cleanup

Michael Taylor ’05, vice president of University and community relations for the Interfraternity Council (IFC), delivered an update on Collegetown Cleanup, an event co-sponsored by the IFC, the Panhellenic Council and the Multicultural Greek Letter Council.

Collegetown Cleanup, a biannual event, brings the Greek community together to clean up the streets of Collegetown.

“Collegetown Cleanup is a great way for the Greek system to give back to the Collegetown community and further our relationship as good neighbors,” Taylor said.

While members of the council supported the Greek efforts to clean Collegetown, they suggested implementing an additional system to foster continuous community maintenance.

“[While] this is a very nice effort [on the part of the Greek system], there does not seem to be a carryover,” said Nancy Schuler, a Tompkins County legislator, who suggested a more regular policy of Collegetown maintenance activity.

Sobriety

Council members also discussed plans for the Collegetown Dry event, set to take place next fall. Initiated by Alexa Mills ’03, the project would provide a dry, block party-like recreational occasion in Collegetown for all students.

“The purpose of the initiative is to create an atmosphere where all Cornell students can participate in something fun,” Mills said.

While the City of Ithaca has been supportive of the project, funding for the event is the next hurdle that organizers will have to face, as all Collegetown bars will have to refrain from serving alcohol that night.

“[The event is now] dependent on whether or not we get corporate sponsorship [to compensate for the bars’ losses],” Mills said.

Finally, the council discussed mounting difficulties in Collegetown’s parking capacity. Many members of the council noted the inconveniences and losses posed to Collegetown business owners, residents and patrons as a result of meager parking availability.

“It’s time to begin talking to City Hall about putting parking on the priority list,” said Jane Marcham, a Collegetown resident.

CNC meetings occur on the second Thursday of every month and are open to all members of the community.


Archived article by Ellen Miller