The Weekly Rant – Episode 1


If you follow me on Twitter you probably know that I like to speak my mind on various topics. Usually my opinions fuel some heated debate and sometimes it gets downright ugly but at the very least it gets people talking/thinking about issues that affect our daily lives. This post is the first in a new series of weekly posts intended to bring these issues to a wider audience. This is going to be fun.

Topic number 1, food trucks in Steveston. Over the weekend I saw that the Le Tigre food truck was at the Steveston Farmers Market. I know that food trucks are staples at other farmers markets around the Lower Mainland but I don’t agree with food trucks operating anywhere near Steveston. Steveston is an extremely seasonal area for restaurants and they have to stick it out through the slow fall and winter months relying on summer business to make ends meet. To have a food truck pull into town on a sunny summer day and take customers away from these businesses doesn’t sit well with me.

Steveston, home of the worlds tamest Seagulls...
Steveston, home of the worlds tamest Seagulls… Photo

Le Tigre has done nothing wrong. They have the required permits, they’re great people and they make great food, it just shouldn’t be happening in Steveston. Sorry guys, I love you but… you know. I have the same opinion about food trucks at White Rock Beach so if a food truck shows up there I’m not going to be happy about it.

Norgate as seen from International Plaza – Photo

Topic number 2, Norgate residents complaining about noisy trains. Norgate is located in North Vancouver just east of the Lions Gate Bridge and south of Marine Drive, so basically right beside the CN rail yard, also right behind the beautiful sulphur piles along the shores of Burrard Inlet. Norgate was developed in the 1940’s to house shipyard workers and is mostly small bungalows with an average selling price somewhere near $650,000. The rail yard has been a part of this neighbourhood for FAR longer than the current residents have lived there. For them to complain about the noise is ridiculous. There were similar complaints in New Westminster a few years ago and they met with the same public reaction. It’s like moving in next to the airport and complaining about noisy planes. If you can afford a $650,000 house you should be smart enough to buy something that isn’t right next door to noisy industry.

Two polarizing topics, feel free to add your thoughts to the comment section. Let’s keep it clean though, ok?



10 thoughts on “The Weekly Rant – Episode 1

  1. The food truck issue is tricky. Why don’t we have the same sympathy for the bricks and mortar restaurants in Vancouver? It must be frustrating to see people walking by your cafe to get a grilled cheese from Mom’s. I’ve reconciled it this way, do better! If people are bypassing your establishment in favour of a food truck and it’s inherent problems (nowhere to sit, wasps etc.) then it’s time to examine what it is that you are NOT doing to entice people into your restaurant. I understand the competetive edge in terms of lower overheads that food trucks have, but restaurants have the edge in terms of comfort, liquor licences etc. In my opinion, it all comes down to food quality and price. Get that balanced and you need not worry about the four wheeled invaders.

    • I don’t disagree with anything you say however downtown businesses have a steady stream of customers year round where as Steveston is very seasonal.

  2. I lived in Steveston for over 10 years and you are right on the money. That place is a dead zone in winter and restaurants really rely on the summer surge to make it through the less busy season. I’ve seen several restaurants come and go because of it. Support local businesses and let the food trucks go where business isn’t seasonal. And you are right on about White Rock as well. Same issue. The strip is dead in winter, spring and any rainy day in fall.

  3. I think the issue of “brick and mortar vs. food truck” in Steveston should be framed within the context of Steveston itself. As someone who was born and raised in the lower mainland, I have seen a dizzying amount of change and development take place in all areas from Langley to the North Shore. Downtown Steveston is a small grid of a few streets that grew up around the cannery and has roots in the Japanese community, among others. The recent development of businesses along the new Canada Line has only served to make Steveston more and more of a “destination” trip that is off the beaten path for most people. Given the coastal weather patterns, only the most die-hard fans of Steveston will venture out in the cold, rainy, drizzly winter months. It is a beautiful and historic snapshot of the history of the lower mainland and deserves to be preserved for this and future generations.

    Food carts and restaurants do not share the same strengths and weaknesses when it comes to dealing with seasonal patterns. Many businesses in Steveston depend on the “windfall” they experience in the summer to cover the slower business periods in the winter. Food trucks and other “portable” businesses do not need to squirrel cash away in the same manner, as they can simply close down shop when the customers go away and do not have the same fixed costs that restaurants do. This is an unfair advantage. If food trucks want to take advantage of the increased customer flow in the summer, then they should be bound to operate all year around.

    • Yes I have a connection with The Hog Shack. That is one of the few Steveston restaurants that does well all year round. Having a connection to a Steveston restaurant makes my rant educated, imo.

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