Food Truck Yard Disagrees with City of Houston Claim and is Working to Get Trucks Back

casian kings at the truck yard

We reported earlier this month that on August 24 the City of Houston Health Department banned food trucks from operating at recently opened The Truck Yard, which is located east of downtown Houston at 2118 Lamar. Now, the company is disputing one of the health department’s claims and providing additional details about what’s being done to comply with the city’s demands.

The Truck Yard first opened in Dallas in 2013, a city where, unlike Houston, having diner conveniences like seating and restrooms near food trucks is perfectly legal. The company then opened its Houston location in May of this year. Currently, though, The Truck Yard in Houston has no food trucks thanks to the ban.

As previously reported, Scott Packard with the City of Houston health department told us that The Truck Yard applied as a food truck commissary rather than as a place for trucks to do business. According to the department, that designation as well as the proximity of tables and chairs to the trucks was what led to the fire marshal’s office and health department to shut down food truck operations on August 24.

Truck Yard Dallas
The Truck Yard in Dallas, which clearly doesn’t have a problem providing seating near food trucks thanks to less-restrictive city ordinances. Photo by Ryan Landis.

After seeing our report, The Truck Yard is disputing Packard’s assertion. The company’s written statement says:

“Since the beginning of our planning phase, we’ve worked hard to adhere to all city ordinances and codes, so we were surprised that, on August 24, the city told our independent food trucks they can no longer operate on the premises.“It has also been reported, and claimed by city officials, that Truck Yard was originally positioned as a commissary — a place where trucks could park, prep food and be serviced. This is abjectly false. Truck Yard never — not during the permitting process or at any other time — positioned itself as a commissary. From day one, we made it clear that we intended to host food trucks on our grounds for the purpose of serving food to guests,”

The Truck Yard’s statement furthermore says the owners are working as quickly as possible to remedy the situation and get trucks back on site. “We are working with architects and spending a lot of money to comply with city officials, who said that our open canopy — which extends 30 feet above the trucks — is technically a building and cannot house propane for fire safety reasons,” the statement said.

The plan is to remove the roof from the truck barn to follow the city’s recommendations and resubmit plans for approval. Until then, the only food option is The Truck Yard’s onsite restaurant , Steak Me Home, which specializes in cheesesteaks. “We hope to have trucks up and running again within one month so we can continue offering Houston diners the variety of food choices they want,” read the statement. “In the meantime, please swing by for a cheesesteak and some drinks.”

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