Calgary's Food Truck Summer - Pilot Update

Post Date: Thursday, May 10, 2012
Mayor Nenshi visits Red Wagon

Calgary’s tastiest pilot project is now into its final phase: the summer of food trucks!

Less than a year ago, Mayor Nenshi, his team, and some entrepreneurs mused about cutting red tape to bring street food to Calgary. In just a few short months, the Food Truck Pilot Program was becoming a great success. The combined efforts of Mayor Nenshi’s team, City of Calgary departments (Calgary Fire Department, Business Licensing, and Roads), entrepreneurs, business revitalization zones, Alberta Health Services, and the Calgary Parking Authority resulted in a streamlined process that connected a hungry public with a willing industry to make food truck magic.

Back in October, Calgary had 10 food trucks roaming the streets and selling all sorts of tasty treats. Right now, we have 19 trucks on the street and may have nearly 30 later this summer. One of the best ways to find the trucks is through twitter or an app (Street Food or YYC Food Truck).

The purpose of the pilot project is to understand how to make the food truck culture and industry successful in our city. Through the pilot, stakeholders have suggested solutions to best license the trucks, ensure health and safety, and help find a balance between traditional “bricks and mortar” restaurants and the trucks.

This summer will see the more food trucks on Calgary’s streets than ever before. It will be an opportunity to work out any kinks in this fledgling industry.

Calgary’s success with food trucks has caught the attention of people from around North America. Municipalities and media from around the continent have contacted The City to learn from our experience. Entrepreneurs are even coming to Calgary to join in the burgeoning industry which includes food truck manufacture, maintenance, and design.

And if you’re watching Eat Street this month (May 9 and May 23), you might just see a few of our trucks (and Mayor Nenshi) on an episode.

Speaking of video, here’s a short documentary about Calgary’s food trucks produced by Mount Royal University journalism degree students Melissa Renwick and Jennifer Friesen:

As we near the end of the pilot project in the fall of this year, City administration will work with stakeholders to recommend formal policy and licensing changes that will move food trucks from being a pilot project to a permanent part of the Calgary landscape.

If you have any questions about the food truck pilot or would like to start your own food truck, please visit this site on

- Daorcey from Mayor Nenshi’s team