I Scream, You Scream, We All Scream for Ice Cream | National Apartment Association

I Scream, You Scream, We All Scream for Ice Cream

I, like most kids, was obsessed with the ice cream truck. Whenever my brother and I heard that classic melody nearby, we’d run upstairs and grab a handful of coins from our Dad’s dresser. Technically stealing, but I see it as borrowing. And I’ve repaid him in blog mentions, so we’re even.

The ice cream was obviously a high point, but I was also in love with this gum you could buy that had a temporary tattoo included under the wrapper. This girl was real inked up in 1995.

Aside from the gum, I think half the appeal of the ice cream truck was rather obvious—you were getting treats from a truck. A truck that probably didn’t pass any sort of health inspection, but who’s worried about that?

A few years ago the food-truck trend started spilling over into tacos, cupcakes, pizza—anything semi-edible—and skewing toward adults. I used to pound Tasty-Kakes every day after school and hide the wrappers under a chair until I could properly dispose of them, so I get the appeal. Food, but on wheels. What’s not to love?

But if we can order food from a truck, why not an apartment, too?

Eddie Moreno, Portfolio Manager for Cardinal Group Management, says his team considered the idea last fall while brainstorming ways to introduce students at the University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA) to Tetro Student Village, opening in Fall 2014. Branded bubble-gum tattoos were mentioned but the idea just didn’t stick. 

“We quickly came to conclusion that the student body’s familiarity with food trucks would be a key advantage in making the concept work,” Moreno says. 

The Tetro Truck was designed to include two 42-inch flat screen TVs, one mounted on the back wall and another on an articulating arm that swings out of the side bay door to stream the community’s various social media feeds. Each flat screen TV is synced and mirrored with an iPad that allows team members to conduct virtual tours, review the floor plans, site amenities, and ultimately walk a prospect through the application and lease process. 

In addition to on-campus appearances, Moreno says the truck is also driven to local retail centers and future residents’ homes or work places.

The No. 1 complaint? It doesn’t offer Choco Tacos.

For more, check out “Food For Thought” in the June issue of units Magazine, which mails June 10.

Lauren Boston is NAA’s Staff Writer and Manager of Public Relations. Unsurprisingly, she writes a lot—most often for units Magazine and as a weekly blogger for APTly Spoken. She enjoys making people laugh, sharing embarrassing childhood stories and being the (self-proclaimed) Voice of the Apartment Industry. She welcomes feedback, unless it’s negative (in which case, please keep it to yourself).