NEWS/ CITY — Two food trucks could be vending freshly prepared temptations in the downtown by Saturday.
Food truck vending is a City pilot program allowing operators to park in the downtown and other areas that have been off-limits until now. The necessary licensing and zoning changes were introduced after a public hearing on the subject in May.
One truck will be permitted to park at Gaglardi Square while another will be located outside the TNRD Civic Building on a rotational basis.
“It’s going pretty well, actually,” planner Stephen Bentley said Wednesday. “We issued a call for proposals and four or five applicants are interested. We’re expecting them to come in this week to get the right-of-way permits and they could be operating by Saturday.”
The City is working on a first-come, first-served basis with vendors who already have a business licence.
The number of applicants seems to reflect the number of truck vendors operating around the city and Bentley doesn’t expect they’ll be swamped with applications in future.
“We haven’t really had to deal with that issue. I imagine there could be more of an uptake and we might have to look at putting on a cap.”
As part of the pilot program, trucks will have the option of renting space on downtown properties, but they must be parked a minimum of 50 metres from a restaurant.
Kamloops Central Business Improvement Association, which includes downtown restaurants, supports the project in the belief that it will help to enliven the streets and attract more people.
There was some objection from the restaurant sector, a business that’s highly competitive with about 30 operating in the downtown core, however, council also heard at the public hearing that food trucks have become a quality-of-life indicator for young professionals looking to relocate to a city.