columbus food truckCOLUMBUS, OH – Owners of Columbus’ most-popular eateries — on wheels and on foundations — have developed a proposal to resolve disputes between food trucks and restaurants.

Members of the Central Ohio Restaurant Association presented a plan to city Councilwoman Michelle M. Mills this month that recommends, among other things, that restaurant and food-truck owners sign good-neighbor agreements to allow businesses to operate with less government control. Members of the Central Ohio Food Truck Association helped create the plan.

The issues boil down to accommodating food trucks that want to sell on public streets in densely populated areas such as the University District, the Short North, the Arena District and Italian Village, where numerous restaurants exist.

Food-truck owners say that regulations the city put forth in June don’t offer enough suitable locations to sell food, while restaurant owners think some food trucks hurt their business.

The new proposal, obtained last week by The Dispatch, was born from meetings among restaurant owners and members of the Central Ohio Food Truck Association.

The owners want the city to referee the good-neighbor agreements. They could include such details as specific times food trucks can park and sell food, how much noise they can make and how they must appear.

Other parts of the proposal:

• Food trucks would be allowed to use two parking meters at once, for up to four hours at a time, and to purchase those spots in three- to six-month blocks. So far, the city has been unwilling to budge on this issue. City code bans vehicles from taking up two meters.

• Food trucks in congested areas such as the Short North, Arena District and Italian Village would be required to enter into good-neighbor agreements with 80 percent of the businesses within a 125-foot radius of where they are selling.

• A food truck with a menu similar to that of a nearby restaurant would be required to get 100 percent agreement from businesses within a 125-foot radius.

• Food trucks would be required to place trash cans within 100 feet of the vehicle and clean up any trash within that radius before leaving.

• Good-neighbor agreements would last for one year, with a five-year renewal option.

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