Faster food truck permits may be on the way in Chilliwack

Food truck operators in Chilliwack may be getting a break.

Efforts are underway at city hall to streamline applications from food vendors looking for permission to park on public lands in Chilliwack.

Efforts are underway at city hall to streamline applications from food vendors looking for permission to park on public lands in Chilliwack.

Food truck operators in Chilliwack may be getting a break.

Efforts are underway at city hall to streamline applications from food vendors looking for permission to park on public lands in Chilliwack.

They’ve seen a spike in requests from individual food truck and food cart operators, and staff set out to clarify the rules, and make the bylaw more user-friendly.

So far two food trucks have applied for these permits individually, but they expect to see a few more street food vendors applying in the coming years.

Part of the goal of modifying the existing policy is to increase the allowable length of food trucks, from six metres to nine metres long, to dovetail with the larger standard of units on the market.

They’ve also created a simpler application process. Whereas in the past if an operator wanted to open the food truck on a city street or in a park, they would have to approach several departments at city hall, now it will be faster and streamlined.

The new policy will create a simplified process with the planning department functioning as a “one stop shop” for business licence applications.

Competition with existing businesses is covered in the bylaw.

The policy states: “Food vendors…may not be located within 25 metres of an established restaurant and/or café or other food vendor on the same block face without written consent of said restaurant/cafe or food vendor.”

There have been some concerns of this nature shared with staff by established businesses.

“The proposed amendments are not intended to alter or remove any existing land use rights,” according to the staff report.

“Essentially any business operating under a current business licence will not be affected by these changes upon renewal of their licence.”

jfeinberg@theprogress.com

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