It’s hard to overstate the excitement that greeted the announcement that a fleet of food trucks would be adding Art Center’s South Campus complex to its rotation of regular stops. Clusters of giddy staffers congregated around 8×10 flyers, speculating over which roach coaches– Holy Aioli? Kogi? – would become the go-to lunch option within walking distance of 950 Raymond Avenue. Unfortunately, this culinary convoy was soon diverted away from South Campus, when turnout wasn’t big enough to justify a stop on the trucks’ lunch route.
On paper, this might have seemed a devastating blow to staffers as well as students tired of foraging for tasty eats in an industrial wasteland. South Campus sits at the heart of Pasadena’s Innovation Corridor, a name that may be more aspirational than descriptive of a neighborhood that houses a semi-functional power plant and a row of hulking industrial monuments to the last century’s love affair with molded concrete and steel. In other words, this is not exactly the kind of neighborhood where one might expect to find an operating vending machine, let alone a reasonably priced handcrafted meal.