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Hungry for change: Hundreds attend food truck summit in Rochester

Hungry for change: Hundreds attend food truck summit in Rochester

A food truck summit was held Wednesday outside the new Kutzky Market in Rochester. The event featured eight vendors serving up everything from tacos to pizza. A trolley provided free shuttle service to and from downtown.

 
 

In addition to grabbing lunch, community members were encouraged to give input on how the city should regulate food trucks.

The city's current ordinance, which essentially bans trucks from operating on public space downtown, has come under fire (from the public and the press) in recent weeks for being too restrictive.

 
 

Here are a few of the ideas brought up at the forum:

  • Have a designated spot where the trucks could operate for a specific time frame (i.e. lunchtime or peak bar hours).
  • Allow food trucks downtown, but only when similar brick and mortar businesses are closed. 
  • Find a private lot where the trucks can set up (K-Mart, Creative Salon and People's Food Cooperative parking lots among those suggested).

Additionally, organizers offered the following recommendations for cities looking to update their food truck regulations:

  • Hold town hall forums for the public and private meetings for key stakeholders.
  • Encourage dialogue between competing stakeholders.
  • Implement pilot programs to determine what regulations to adopt.

The issue could get more attention in the near future. City Council Member Michael Wojcik, an outspoken critic of the current policy, plans to introduce a new version of the food truck ordinance later this month.

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(Cover photo: The Med City Beat)

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