Mobile food vendors, restaurants seek compromise in Provo

Posted at 10:11 PM, Jul 03, 2014
and last updated 2014-07-04 00:11:21-04

PROVO, Utah -- There's a battle brewing between food trucks and restaurants in Provo, and mobile food vendors are standing their ground.

"We're really trying hard not to compete," said Chris Farnsworth, who is the GM of Sweet O Burrito, a mobile food vendor.

It's food trucks versus restaurants in downtown Provo. Some restaurants think mobile food vendors are a little too close for comfort.

"Provo City's current food truck situation is a little bit outdated," said Dean Judd with the Utah Restaurant Association.

"I understand their point, they've built an establishment and I can see that but I think Provo is big enough and Utah County is big enough to have both and serve both and I think there's a need for it and a want for it in the valley," said Kendall Stookey with Stooks BBQ, a mobile food vendor in Utah County.

The solution? The Provo City Council says to meet somewhere in the middle. Provo's current ordinance allows food trucks to park on Center Street and University Avenue. Restaurant Owners said that takes away their business.

"By no means are the restaurants trying to push the food trucks out of business in any way, they're entitled to make money just as we are,” Judd said. “We're just trying to help the city find a fair balance as to what they should and shouldn't be able to do.”

"It's hard to say how it's going to work out, but it is something that we are concerned with and are addressing because we're not trying to hurt the restaurants," Farnsworth said.

There will be several meetings to debate this. The city council hopes to create an ordinance both sides will be happy with on July 15.