Gibraltar Grill’s Courtesy Cart Boosts Business

Tom Young at the wheel of the Gibraltar Grill’s courtesy cart, a 6-passenger Neighborhood Electric Vehicle with no tailpipe emissions that he uses to transport customers to his Fish Creek restaurant. Photo by Dan Eggert.

When “location, location, location” wasn’t working for co-owner Tom Young at the Gibraltar Grill in Fish Creek, he came up with an innovative way to change the dynamic.

The Gibraltar Grill began offering transportation in Fish Creek this summer on its new courtesy cart, a six-passenger Neighborhood Electric Vehicle (NEV). Eight 6-volt batteries power the cart, which can be recharged by plugging into a normal electrical outlet. Operating the cart costs only six cents per mile, Young said.

The restaurant on the north end of the downtown business district is located too far from the marina for many customers to walk, so Young bought the cart to offer an easy taxi service from the dock to his restaurant.

“We have a number of customers down at the docks who said it was too far to walk,” he said. “If I had some vehicle that was efficient and cheap to run, and a fun vehicle, I could offer people the opportunity to ride out here.”

The service has given Young’s business a boost. He estimates that about 100 people utilize the service per week.

“Ninety-five percent [of my riders] said they would not have come to my restaurant without the option,” he said.

The cart service quickly expanded beyond dock pickup. The notoriously tight parking in the center of Fish Creek helped expand the cart’s range over the last month, Young said.

People staying in local hotels and condominiums began asking for rides, and the cart’s services have since grown to include anyone in Fish Creek, whether they’re staying at a hotel or shopping downtown.

“Parking is such a hard problem in Fish Creek,” Young said. “People park downtown, and they don’t want to move their cars because they’re afraid they’ll never get another parking space.”

The Gibraltar Grill’s courtesy cart runs through town making regular stops at the Town Dock and Alibi Marina between 11 am and 3 pm. For evening pickup call the Gibraltar Grill at 920.868.4745.

Neighborhood Electric Vehicles

A Neighborhood Electric Vehicle (NEV) is a battery-powered electric that emits no tailpipe emissions.

In Gibraltar, NEVs are limited to roads with a speed limit of 35 miles per hour or less. Operators must have a valid driver’s license and follow the same rules and responsibilities of someone driving a regular motor vehicle.