Arlington Considers Easing Food Truck Regulations

Current rules require trucks to move after 30 minutes

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    NEWSLETTERS

    While the demand for food trucks increases, the city of Arlington has strict rules regulating how the trucks operate. (Published Tuesday, Feb 19, 2013)

    Arlington is considering relaxing its strict rules on how food trucks in the city operate.

    City officials say if they allow food trucks to operate more freely, they will likely do so in increments, first designating specific areas that the city thinks can support the trucks, such as around the stadiums, convention center and downtown.

    "They can congregate in specific areas that can help with economic development, help with attracting tourists and also visitors to specific areas within the community," Councilman Robert Rivera said.

    Currently, food trucks are not allowed to remain stationary for more than 30 minutes.

    Initially, the trucks would likely operate on an event basis, such as a day when a game is at Rangers Ballpark in Arlington or Cowboys Stadium.

    "If we have a food truck event on a weekend and people come down and they enjoy the event, well, maybe they'll come back later and enjoy the other things we have to offer," said Tony Rutigliano, president and CEO of the Downtown Arlington Management Corp.

    Many people around the city hope the City Council eases regulations before April, when the first Texas Food Truckin' Fest is scheduled. The food truck event is supposed to be one of the largest in the state.

    "I think it would be a good idea, especially for people who work around here and live around here -- more options that are convenient," said Erin Townsend, who lives and works in Arlington.

    But unlike Dallas and Fort Worth, Rutigliano said he doesn't expect a permanent food truck park to set up shop -- at least not yet.

    "I don't think we're ready for a permanent park yet," he said. "We've got a lot of people who have invested a lot of their own money to build permanent restaurants, and we need to continue to support those restaurants."