City Hall Inching Deliciously Close To Accepting Street Food

4595668593_bc82faae7f_bPortland street food scene | photo: camknows

Arguably the most embarrassing facet of our food city is its paucity of street food. Thanks to a ruling that is now 32 years old, City Hall only permits hot dogs, chestnuts and popcorn to be sold from carts. You might be able to score some crepes at a Farmers Market, but where’s my Pad Thai and my fish tacos? Where, goddammit!

It’s been a real sore point with local foodies, many of whom look upon our barren streetscape with no small twitch of shame. In comparison, the variety of cuisines offered by the catering trucks and carts of Portland and Seattle is straight up staggering. You can score anything. While there have been feints of change from the No Fun Nabobs for a while now, it looks like there will actually be a pilot project in place by July that will bring new flavours to a curb near you. From Randy Shore in the Vancouver Sun:

The move will likely expand the menu available on city sidewalks from pre-cooked packaged foods such as hotdogs to more freshly prepared fare. The city soon will issue a call for expressions of interest seeking vendors who want to offer streetside food service, according to the acting manager of streets administration.

Grant Woff said the city is starting to implement the pilot project and looking for street locations where catering trucks or trailers can set up. The city already has 60 locations for cart-based vendors and is identifying new spaces to accommodate larger carts, Woff said.

“There a huge amount of interest in this,” said Coun. Heather Deal, who first proposed allowing fresh food and food preparation in a motion to council two years ago. “I get more e-mail about this than any other topic.”

I’m not getting my hopes up just yet. I’ll believe it when I taste it. Keep emailing her.