Section: News

Village Council meets to discuss food trucks, traffic issues

On March 4, Gambier’s Village Council met to discuss possible amendments to the Village’s food truck ordinance, traffic concerns and upcoming April events.  

For months, the Council has received ongoing complaints surrounding food trucks. This academic year, there has been a significant uptick in both the frequency and number of food trucks in the Village, upsetting both local businesses and residents. The trucks have increased competition for the brick-and-mortar food businesses of Gambier, such as the Village Market and the Village Inn, and the trucks also produce more noise and light than neighbors would prefer.  

In trying to balance supporting local businesses with offering a variety of food options for residents, the Council proposed multiple ideas on how to potentially amend the food truck ordinance, 2017-17. One possible solution would be to force truck owners to supply their own electricity through a generator rather than taking it from the Village. Council members also suggested increasing the fee for trucks to operate on campus or putting further limits on how often trucks can come. A last option, proposed by Village Market owner Nick Jones, was restricting the hours of operation for trucks to after midnight when the Market closes, as he alleged that the trucks could still do a lot of business in those hours.  

Jones attended the meeting virtually and told the Council, “The frequency is my big issue.” He continued by noting that food trucks can cost him as much as $1,200 per night. “It’s definitely impactful, but that’s also capitalism,” Jones said. 

The Council also reported that there had been an increase in traffic stops in the Village by the deputy from the Knox County Sheriff’s Office, which the Council viewed as a step in the right direction for addressing speeding issues in the Village. One resident remained concerned about speeding on Wiggin Street, referring to the spot as “Wiggin Speedway.” The Council also brought up the possibility of a new stop sign near the Lowry Center where South Acland Street meets Duff Street. Council members were also concerned that there is a blind curve while driving down the hill on S. Acland Street, referencing a recent incident near the location when a pedestrian was injured by a vehicle.  

Another point of conversation was planning for upcoming events in the Village, such as a Day of Service that Kenyon is hosting on April 10, and the Village’s 43022 Day on April 27. The Council emphasized the need for as much community involvement as possible for both events.  

The next Village Council meeting will be held on April 1 at 7 p.m.


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