After a two-year successful experience with a pilot program for food trucks, a permanent Mobile Food Unit (MFU) ordinance was drafted late in 2015. Public comment was solicited, and thoughtful feedback from citizens prompted a series of amendments to the proposed ordinance, first by City staff and then by City Council. On April 26, 2016, City Council voted unanimously to adopt the permanent ordinance regulating food trucks.
The permanent ordinance, which replaces the regulations set up for the pilot program, continues to allow mobile food vendors to operate in similar fashion – plus, it expands the program to allow food trucks in other districts under certain closely-regulated conditions.
Additionally, permit fees have been reduced as part of the new ordinance. The pilot program included a tiered fee system; MFUs operating only on private property paid $200 annually, and those operating on private property and in designated zones in the public right-of-way paid $400 annually. Under the new ordinance, MFUs will pay an initial $200 annual fee and an annual $50 renewal fee. MFUs desiring to operate during a one-time event may apply for a temporary permit at a cost of $75; these MFUs must still comply with all MFU requirements.
If you have comments or questions about operating a Mobile Food Unit in the City of Knoxville, please contact Patricia Robledo, the City's Business Liaison, at firstname.lastname@example.org
Learn more about operating a Mobile Food Unit in the City of Knoxville:
Mobile Food Unit Ordinance [PDF]
FAQs for Mobile Food Unit Ordinance [PDF]
Permit Application for Mobile Food Unit [PDF]
Rules and Maps for Operation in City Parks [PDF]