The City Council on Tuesday night approved continuing a downtown mobile food truck program that River City Company officials said has been a success in enlivening downtown.
The resolution has a clause that allows food trailers, but says they must remain connected to trucks.
Some food dealers want to be able to drop off the trucks at downtown venues.
Steve Leach, city public works administrator, said it could become a problem if food trailers are left "camped out" at sites for lengthy periods.
He asked that the trailers be moved off the site at the close of each day except at the vacant section of the 700 block of Market Street where they might be allowed longer.
Dorris Shober, owner of Lupi's Pizza, said she invested $30,000 in a mobile food operation that includes a 20-foot truck and a 20-foot trailer. She said it becomes a problem when it is required that they remain connected. She said she would not leave her trailer at the spot long - even overnight.
Chris Thomas, who heads the Chattanooga Market, said clarification is needed on the food trailers. He said they have been in use for four years at the market and he only recently learned that they were not permitted under an ordinance two years ago.
It was agreed that talks will continue this week on the food trailer issue and the ordinance may be amended soon.
Councilman Jack Benson said there needed to be restrictions on food trailers "or else we'll look like Pigeon Forge. They'll be selling t-shirts and socks."
Mr. Leach said, "Some are asking why we are being so mean to the cupcake folks. We are just trying to keep them under control."
Gigi's Cupcakes has one of the food trailers.