New food-truck rules are a go! Kind of

New food-truck rules are a go! Kind of

A map showing all the curbs where food trucks can’t park. (Image: Metro/Google Maps)

Thanks to the valiant efforts of Toronto restaurant-industry lobbyists and skittish city councilors, Toronto will not become a lawless frontier town, ruled by roving bands of sandwich artisans.

This morning, Toronto awoke to a new world of slightly improved mobile-vending possibilities—“slightly” being the key word. After two days’ worth of hemming and hawing over the fate of Toronto food trucks, city council finally cast their votes. On the plus side, they agreed to adopt a set of new rules designed to make the city more hospitable to roving food vendors. That said, they also voted to nix a batch of truck-friendly reforms to the proposed policy, which were recommended last month by the city’s licensing and standards committee.

That means that trucks will be allowed to park in pay-and-display parking spaces downtown, but will have to abide a three-hour time limit and stay at least 50 metres away from operating restaurants—a restriction that, judging by Metro’s quick-and-dirty analysis in the map above, makes much of downtown core off-limits. (The 50 metre rule doesn’t apply to private lots, where trucks will be able to operate more freely.) BIA management boards will also be able to apply to have food trucks banned from their territories.

According to the Globe, councilors who voted against the reforms were worried that too many food trucks on the roads may lead to literal fistfights. It’s always a little alarming when Rob Ford’s opinion stands out as the sole voice of reason. “Let ‘em sell what they want and let the customer decide,” he said. We have to agree.