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Council unanimously approves Food Truck Ordinance

Post Date:01/18/2017 12:31 PM

MONTGOMERY -- The Montgomery City Council on Tuesday approved an ordinance paving the way for food trucks to operate in downtown Montgomery.

"We are pleased to see this ordinance unanimously approved by the city council," Montgomery Mayor Todd Strange said. "We know the demand is here, and it complements the quality of life infrastructure we will continue implementing across our community. Our Planning staff worked tirelessly to ensure we have a fair ordinance that primes the pump for entrepreneurship while maintaining a business climate conducive to success for our brick-and-mortar restaurants."

Currently, food trucks are authorized to operate on private property. This ordinance would create additional designated zones in the public right-of-way at which food truck vendors will be allowed to operate with a valid business license.

The State House Inn parking lot and spots on Ripley Street between the Alabama State House and the Folsom Building are designated as food truck zones, and each spot will have signage. Licensed vendors, approved by the health department, can park on a first come, first served basis from 5 a.m. until 10 p.m. daily. The vehicle must be manned and open for business when parked in the designated spaces.

Concern for brick-and-mortar restaurants along with research into which areas of downtown have the most demand for food options were taken into account when drafting the ordinance. The City Clerk’s office said it could go into effect as early as January 26.

"We see this ordinance as a win for residents, downtown workers, restaurants and entrepreneurs because we specified zones that will bring new options to a part of downtown in need of more food vendors, while ensuring we maintain a level playing field for those longtime businesses in the entertainment district who have invested a lot of time and money in their locations," Director of General Services Steve Jones said. “It’s also something that we’ll watch to see if we need to amend the ordinance as demand increases and we gather vendors’ feedback.”

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