The food truck pilot: cutting red tape for a tasty revolution

Post Date: Thursday, August 04, 2011

Have you heard about food trucks? In other cities across North America, you can grab gourmet goodies from the side of a truck parked on the street. Each truck can have its unique speciality made with care (and often right on site!) for the hungry traveler. The best tacos, gelato, bbq, burgers, fries, desserts, and more are just a brief walk away.

A food truck can be an amazing part of a healthy and active street life in a community. A special snack or unique meal just down the road can encourage people to come out of their offices and homes to grab a bite, chat with friends, and enjoy the atmosphere. Food trucks make sense for foodies, tourists, and community-minded citizens.

That’s why Mayor Nenshi and his team are happy to help make food trucks a reality in Calgary. Up until now, there were a few barriers to the common food truck. In particular, vehicles preparing and selling food were prohibited from operating on public city streets and parking lots.

Can we fix that? Sure we can.

And we can do it relatively quickly while also being sure everyone with an interest in food trucks has their say. It's just one more way we're transforming government and cutting red tape at the City of Calgary.

Starting on August 11, 2011, The City of Calgary, along with our food truck entrepreneurs and various business revitalization zone (BRZ) partners, is launching the Food Truck Pilot project that will bring food trucks to our streets. We're fortunate to be hitting the ground rolling with a number of excellent food truck vendors that are ready to go now. Our goal is to understand what needs to be done—together—to best regulate and recognize food trucks as an industry in Calgary over the long term.

Over the past month, Mayor Nenshi’s team has brought together all the players that will make this pilot a success. A host of City departments, the Calgary Fire DepartmentAlberta Health Services, and vendors have been with the group from the beginning to make sure this developing industry is safe, fair, and thriving.

For our part, we’re particularly proud that our City of Calgary departments and partners (including the Calgary Parking Authority) have worked hard to make things happen quickly.

During the pilot, food trucks that have obtained a valid business licence by meeting the health, fire, code, and insurance requirements will be given a special permit that will let them operate in many street locations throughout Calgary. Throughout the pilot, everyone involved will work together to cut the red tape by developing a clear policy and identifying any regulations or bylaw changes that are needed to ensure a great food truck culture in Calgary.

We’re just days away from the tastiest pilot project Calgary’s ever seen! For more information on the food truck revolution, check out YYC Food Trucks.

- Daorcey from Mayor Nenshi's team