Our friend Louisa Chu of WBEZ reports via Twitter that the food truck ordinance has just passed the City Council 44-1, apparently without major alteration from the committee version passed last week. We’re not sure who the vote against was— it appears from her tweets that it may be 45th Ward alderman John Arena— but 4th Ward Alderman Will Burns tried to abstain, and was told that he had to either vote no or go out and make a phone call to be absent. (That may have made it 45-1 or 44-2, we’re not sure.) We will have more on the vote and the ordinance as more is known.
Prior to that business, the Council took a moment to honor with an honorary street name one of Chicago’s great restaurant success stories: Charlie Trotter, who not only played a pivotal role in making Chicago a culinary capitol but surely contributed no small part to the economic growth of the north side lakefront area. As we learned yesterday in this video series, Trotter got his start, not with a food truck but with another somewhat ephemeral food business, doing what we’d now call pop-up dinners to make some money and spread the word for his upcoming restaurant. You might think there’d be a lesson there about the value of encouraging small businesses to grow bigger, but if so, you’re not the City Council— instead Alderman Tom Tunney, who owns Ann Sather’s, pointedly commented that Trotter’s success proves the value of brick and mortar restaurants. [Louisa Chu via Twitter]