FLINT (WJRT) –
(07/17/13) – Consider it a curbside restaurant – on wheels.
“I am so excited to have it in Flint. I like to do things that stand out a little bit and that are a little unique. This is really more exciting that a boring restaurant some where,” said Josh Spencer, Owner of Flint Trolley Ice Cream & Cafe.
Spencer and his crew hope to open Flint Trolley Ice Cream & Cafe by mid-August – with up to 10 employees working inside.
“We’ll have hand-dipped and soft served ice cream. We would like to put it in the downtown Flint area. We’re just working with the city to find a location that we can set it in. Otherwise, we’ll use it somewhere in the Flint area,” Spencer said.
The car itself is almost 30 years old and is a replica of a classic style trolley. Right now, it’s receiving some touchups in Flint Township – that includes getting it up to health department standards, and yes, it can still be driven.
“It was built in Grand Rapids. It was then sent to a university in Colorado to be used as a trolley. From there, it was purchased by people in Austin, Texas, shipped down there and converted into a restaurant down in Austin, and now we’ve just had it shipped on a flat bed up to Flint,” Spencer said.
The new owners of the trolley car were actually surprised at how little restoration they had to do on the inside. The seats are in great condition – and even the bell still works.
Flint actually has some history with trolleys. In fact, up until the mid-1930’s, they ran along the bricks of Saginaw Street.
“We had a trolley restaurant downtown, it was more of a Coney Island style, years ago. Nostalgia of old Flint will have a big impact on downtown,” Spencer said.
Spencer believes taking a page from the past can help create big business and a brighter future.
“I really think it will become an icon for the Flint area. When people will come, they’ll take pictures and post it on their Facebook pages, and become, not just a restaurant, but actually a novelty item,” he said.
Original article by Marc Jacobson for ABC12.
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