15 November 2018
Greens Councillor Mithra Cox has put a notice of motion to the next Wollongong Council meeting, to allow food trucks to liven up empty spaces at night.
“Wollongong should follow the lead of Sydney and allow food trucks in places where you can’t currently get a bite to eat, or in places that feel a bit dodgy and empty at night, where we want to encourage more people come,” Councillor Cox said today.
“Food trucks are increasingly popular in cites around the world, and have been used successfully to promote nightlife, and give people a reason to use our public spaces at night.
“They promote community safety and harmony, as they generally do not sell alcohol, and appeal to all ages, including children and older people. Having this mix of ages mingling of an evening is a powerful contributor to a sense of vibrancy and safety in public spaces.
“Council currently has a Mobile Food Vending Vehicles Policy. This policy outlines prohibitions on where food trucks can trade, and identifies just three locations where mobile kiosks can operate, all of which are day time trading.
“Food trucks are specifically prohibited near council licensed venues in key locations such as Belmore Basin, without regard for trading hours. Some of these locations could and should support evening food trucks without competing with local businesses.
“While Wollongong nightlife has been steadily improving, we still have a long way to go to have a truly vibrant night time economy. Many places along the foreshore are popular in the day but deserted in the evening due to lack of food options.
“This strategy should be aimed at encouraging food trucks, not prohibiting them. It should identify areas in need of night time activation, where they will not compete with bricks and mortar businesses. It should make it easy for food truck vendors to see when and where they can trade, and have a simple process for booking a space and paying fees,” Cr Cox said.
The motion (below) will be debated on Monday night.
I formally move that Council develop a strategy to encourage food trucks in our city to contribute to a vibrant night life in Wollongong.
The strategy to promote food trucks in Wollongong would encompass:
- Identifying public land that is appropriate for food trucks of mobile food vendors
- Identifying spaces in need of night time activation and food options
- Developing a simple process for food trucks to book a space and pay their fee
- Reviewing our existing policy on Mobile Food Vending Vehicles
- Applying learnings from food truck trials in other local government areas such as the City of Sydney
More information: Mithra Cox 0419 720 322