The Downtown Denver Partnership has been working hard to increase the mix of menu options on the 16th Street Mall, expanding hours as well as offerings. "One of the things we've been striving for for the last couple of years is to increase the quality, predictability and overall appearance and image of the vending program on the 16th Street Mall," says the DDP's John Desmond. But some old vendors don't like the new rules. "We're independent vendors who are limited in budget and resources," says Mohammed Elaemi, who runs Shondiz, a kebab stand. "Who can really do six or seven days a week as individuals? We'll wear out in a couple of months."
The Partnership is risking coming across as a bully . . . whether they want to or not. Increase the flexible hours and favor the independent operator, the little guy. There is enough corporate cookie cutter stuff already.
I like everything Desmond has to say EXCEPT that he doesn't say he will rule out corporate leases. Corporations should not be allowed to lease and then game on. Sorry Shondiz, but I wish you were open on the weekend or later so I could miss the lunch rush and downtown traffic.
What's your favorite vendor on the mall? What vendors would you like to see added to the mix?
Keep Westword Free... Since we started Westword, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Denver, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Denver with no paywalls.