What Happened to the Chicago Food Truck Movement?

In Chicago, food trucks are disappearing and some blame the city’s stepped up enforcement of regulations and fines.

1 minute read

April 13, 2017, 10:00 AM PDT

By Casey Brazeal @northandclark


Food Trucks

Marit & Toomas Hinnosaa / Flickr

In cities around the U.S., the food truck industry is growing. "In LA County there are currently 2,600 permits for food trucks; Minneapolis, where winters are harsher than they are in Chicago, has 80 to 90 trucks; and Washington, D.C., has 100, according to representatives of those cities' local food truck associations," Julia Thiel reports for the Chicago Reader. Those numbers contrast sharply with those of Chicago, where the city only supports 70 licensed trucks. That number is approximately half what the city had in 2012.

Gabriel Wiesen, president of the Illinois Food Truck Association, argues that the difference between Chicago and those other cities is regulation. In Chicago the laws "…prohibit the trucks from parking within 200 feet of any business that sells food (including convenience stores and pharmacies), and from remaining in the same spot for more than two hours," Thiel reports. These rules have become more difficult to coexist with since a 2012 report in the Sun Times criticized the city for its lax enforcement, which lead to a crackdown.

Wednesday, March 29, 2017 in Chicago Reader

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