The Flower Mound Town Council will consider proposals to allow ice cream trucks in the town, as well as to expand the usage of food trucks.
Under the town's code of ordinances ice cream trucks are not allowed to operate in the town. Food trucks are only allowed on construction sites or as a part of a special event.
Matt Woods, director of environmental services, said every few years food truck vendors ask if they can operate in the town. He said a request was made to the Town Council in February to allow food trucks in parking lots.
The council favored allowing ice cream trucks operate in the town and directed the town staff to draft a proposal that would make that an allowed use.
“I don't see why we don't allow ice cream trucks to drive through neighborhoods,” Deputy Mayor Pro Tem Claudio Forest said. “I know a lot of communities limit their hours of operation so they're not out there at 8 p.m. ringing the bell or playing music.”
Councilman Jim Pierson said his only concern is allowing them in areas where there are no sidewalks.
“If they were out, like in (the) Franklin Hills (neighborhood) that could be very dangerous,” Pierson said. “But beyond that … as long as they can be controlled in some fashion (through zoning).”
Police Chief Andy Kancel said his only concern is limiting the hours of operation.
Woods suggested background checks through the vendor permitting process, similar to what the town requires for solicitor permits.
Council members also supported allowing food trucks to operate in the town more so than they can do now.
The Flower Mound Food Truck Fest took place from 2015-2018, and Woods said there were 22 vendors in 2018.
Forest said a lot of cities have food truck courts, and the property owner or developer leases out parking spaces for a business.
“I'd love to see something like that here in town where people could go to to hang out on a Friday night, especially if it's in conjunction with a bar or brewery type of thing,” Forest said. “That's how we should approach food trucks, to incentivize or allow someone to come in and put in a food truck court and develop something like that. I don't think we want food trucks just parked in the Kroger parking lot. That, to me, doesn't make sense.”
Councilman Ben Bumgarner agreed.
“If you look at some cities like McKinney or Dallas they have outdoor venues, and instead of having a barbecue shack, they have a whole dedicated line of food trucks that work for independent vendors and they service the outdoor venue for whatever music venue or if there's an act playing,” Bumgarner said. “As we grow out west that might be something people want to bring in, and why would we want to hinder that?”
Woods said among the considerations that must take place are health and fire permits and state requirements, possibly requiring a specific use permit (SUP), the number of parking spaces taken up by the food trucks, hours of operation and the type of vehicle that would be allowed.
Town Manager Jimmy Stathatos said the town staff will bring ideas back to the council at a future meeting.