NORTHBROOK, IL – After almost a year of deliberations and discussions with community members, Northbrook officials have passed a set of regulations for food trucks, which have grown in popularity in the area and across the country over recent years.
The ordinance, which Northbrook trustees passed at a May 27 meeting, tries to strike a balance between allowing food trucks to provide service to residents and protecting the interests of the local businesses, officials said.
Trustees said they hope to revisit the rules in about a year to see if they need to be adjusted.
“One of the things we discussed is whether this will be negative or whether it will be positive,” said Trustee Todd Heller at a recent meeting, adding that in some cases having a food truck next other restaurant could increase foot traffic to the area in general. “We want to see what happens.”
The new regulations create three separate categories for types of food trucks.
Ice cream trucks would be allowed to operate on any public street in the village or on any parking lot with permission of the lot’s property owner.
Traditional food trucks, such as hot dog stands and cupcake wagons, also could park in any lot in the village as long as they have the property owner’s permission.
But they would not be allowed to operate on any public street in the village, just on Meadow and Sunset Ridge roads.
The two roadways were selected after a long discussion during which officials said they realized that the village doesn’t have many roads with on-street parking.
“We came to it sort of by a process of elimination,” said Tom Poupard, director of development and planning services, adding that there is a possibility of altering the regulations if needed.
The ordinance also restricts any food truck or ice cream truck from being close to a large-scale event such as a festival or a carnival that has been given a special-event permit by the village.
The mobile vendors have to be 500 feet away from the lot line of the property where such an event is occurring.
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