Contrary to what was reported in the LA Weekly, Save The Food Trucks and elsewhere, the Abbot Kinney Merchants Committee of the Venice Chamber of Commerce “rejects claims of negotiations concerning food trucks on First Fridays.”
From the Abbot Kinney Merchants Committee:
The Abbot Kinney Merchants Committee (AKMC) of the Venice Chamber of Commerce would like to clarify recent false reports that the AKMC was in negotiations with Bigfoot Entertainment and the Southern California Mobile Food Vendors Association (SCMFVA) to bring additional food trucks to Bigfoot’s private lot at 1611 Electric Ave. (adjacent to Abbot Kinney Blvd.) for First Fridays.
Bigfoot’s decision to work with the SCMFVA on this business arrangement was neither made with prior approval from, nor negotiated with, the AKMC. The AKMC does not support any effort to bring additional food trucks to Abbot Kinney without further deliberations on the growing impact the unsustainable, and under-regulated, influx of food trucks has on our surrounding community, for the following reasons:
1) Community Impact: Abbot Kinney Blvd. is a roughly 1 mile long street populated by small, independent businesses and immediately surrounded by residential neighborhoods. For years, this delicate balance between commerce and community has been carefully forged with mutual respect and a shared investment in the prosperity of Venice. Many in the mobile catering industry, in concert and often led by members of the SCMFVA, have maligned our community with repeated calls to boycott not only the small, independent businesses of Abbot Kinney, but also the entirety of Venice.
2) Environmental Impact: The inordinate number of food trucks that converge on this small community, coming from as far as Diamond Bar and City of Industry, leave behind an alarming amount of litter and food waste. Although the SCMFVA has made previous claims to the contrary, the footprint of the food trucks coupled with that of their “followers” is undeniable and readily evident even days after they’ve come and gone.
3) Public Safety Impact: With upwards of 50 trucks lining the boulevard, each standing at 6 feet tall or higher and wider than two mid-sized sedans, both safe pedestrian passage and vehicle visibility are considerably compromised to the extent that LAPD regards this as a real matter of public safety.
The AKMC reiterates its ongoing commitment to fostering the vibrant, creative, and communal spirit of Abbot Kinney that has made First Fridays a celebrated tradition.