So, what is a good rule for food trucks…


So, what is a good rule for food trucks…

Folks are up in arms over gourmet food trucks parking on the street and what, taking parking spaces, or are they concerned about taking business from bricks and mortar restaurants. I have already commented on this here. For the Lazy readers, I simply said that the trucks should meet the same health and safety issues than restaurants and should pay for the parking spaces they use.

The city of LA is going out for an ordinance. They have asked the city attorney to come up with the wording. What could possibly go wrong.

Why does it have to be so complicated. Why can’t they simply follow the rules that are sat down now. Ok, let’s say the truck takes two spaces – they fill two meters. Let’s say the rules say that they can only stay two hours. So be it.

Now if the city wants to be lenient, they can sell the truck a permit which allows them to legally “feed” the meter and stay longer, say three or four hours (over lunch). Why is this such a major earth shattering issue. The enforcement folks can wander by and snack on gourmet dumplings while they ensure that the meters are fed and the permits are permitted.

My guess is, however, that the city will set up an entire bureaucracy, complete with a commissar or whoever in charge of such permits. The trucks will need special parking permits, and will only be able to park in certain areas. Gourmet Cops will be hired to enforce the regulations and in a city like LA, certainly hundreds will be needed. My solution required nothing but the printing of some permits and stacking then next to the residential parking permits at city hall. When the truck owner needs a permit, they fill out a form, pay a fee, and get a permit. Simple, easy, and nonexistent in city government. After all, the lawyers are involved.

Local merchants should love to have one in front of their stores. All those people walking by and standing around with nothing to do except look in their windows. Maybe they can work out a deal with the truck – offer discount coupons for food with merchandise purchase. The marketing ideas are endless.

We in LA want an urban “scene.” What better way in an auto based city like this one than to have restaurants on wheels moving around providing service to folks. I understand that these are well beyond the old “roach coach” you may be used to. They are full-fledged gourmet kitchens featuring exotic foods and drink. What’s not to like.


Picture of John Van Horn

John Van Horn

One Response

  1. In our, we have two solutions. First, one food cart, which must meet all health regulations, per street corner. They set up on the sidewalk each morning for the lunch crowd and are gone in the afternoon. Lots of variety and customers love it.
    Second, the private operators of surface lots rent space to food trucks, who meet all heatlth regulations. We have a number of blocks where you cannot see the off street parking for the row of food trucks. Lots of variety and customers love it. We even have an annual “best food trucks” publication in the local weekly, outlining type of food offered and providing a critique of the quality of their offerings.
    Best of all, no on street parking is removed. However, local restaurants don’t like the competition. Some food trucks have opened up in vacant storefronts. Nearly everyone is happy.

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