RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) – The City of Raleigh may ease up its restrictions on food trucks and other mobile vendors.
City council on Tuesday directed a committee to take a closer look at recommendations from city planners to create more flexibility in their mobile vending restrictions. The proposed changes could create more opportunities for customers and ultimately more money for businesses.
Amenys Taveras is new to the food truck scene. She runs The Cheat Meal Spot.
“I always liked cooking so my husband, he gave me the idea,” he said.
Taveras said just setting up her truck can be complicated.
“We either have to ask the city or, if it’s a shopping center, ask the owners of the shopping center, so it’s always a challenge with that,” she said.
In Raleigh, city rules require her truck to be on a lot with a brick and mortar business. She can’t be within 100 feet of a restaurant. If she’s on the street, it needs to be a loading zone.
Taveras and Epic Vegan owner Kibri Everett welcome proposed changes for the city’s mobile vendors.
“One time when I went downtown Raleigh and I’d prepared all this food, and a city official told me I could not set up,” Everett said.
Some of the proposed changes could keep that from happening again. Recommendations from city planners would permit food trucks in parking lots, parking in on-street spaces, and allow more use of A-frame menu signs.
“It would just help more food truck operators to get in front of more people and serve more customers,” Everett said.
A city committee will be tasked with refining the recommendations more before it goes up for a vote. Everett has a recommendation of her own: making the permitting process simpler.
“If there’s a way to expedite or ease that process, I think that would be very beneficial,” Everett said.