CHICAGO, IL – A state appeals court panel has unanimously rejected a lawsuit that challenges the city of Chicago’s five-year-old ordinance regulating food trucks.

In a unanimous ruling issued Monday, the three justices of the 1st District Appellate Court of Illinois found no reason to strike down the ordinance Mayor Rahm Emanuel proposed and aldermen approved in 2012.

The rules, which are deeply unpopular with Chicago’s food truck owners, restrict the “mobile food vendors” from operating within 200 feet of restaurants.

“The city has a critical interest in maintaining a thriving food service industry, of which brick-and-mortar establishments are an essential part,” wrote appeals court Justice Sheldon A. Harris.

“The 200-foot exclusion represents a rational means of ensuring the general welfare of the city and is neither arbitrary nor unreasonable,” Harris added.

Food-truck interests filed the suit against the city just two weeks after passage of the ordinance by the City Council in July 2012, court records show.

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