In half an hour, the Seattle City Council's Built Environment committee will once again be discussing street food, specifically, innovative legislation that would create food truck zones—much like loading zones—in specific areas and allow up to two sidewalk vendors to sell food per city block face (but not within 50 feet of a restaurant's door).

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  • JeanineAnderson via Flickr
Here's a full, nerdly rundown of the proposal (.pdf).


But city council members aren't sold on the proposal—they want to impose curfews on street food. And some business owners want to make it mandatory for food vendors to get permission before setting up stands in front of their stores, which is frankly illegal (sidewalks and streets are public right-of-ways controlled by the city, not private businesses).

Meanwhile, some restaurateurs are lobbying council members to increase the restaurant setback from 50 to 100 feet, which would cripple the proposal (sidewalk vendors are ideal for the active Pike/Pine corridor, for instance, but city blocks are between 200 and 300 feet long in that area, so setting up a sidewalk stand 100 feet away from every food-selling business would be virtually impossible most places).

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It's an interesting fight and right now, the opposition is dominating. So if you want great street food, I suggest you email council committee members and let them know.

The meeting starts at 9:30 a.m. You can watch it live over here.

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