Amanda and Nicholas Kent, who own Maine Wicked Goods Mercantile on Route 1 in Freeport, want the town to allow food trucks in their neighborhood. Kate Irish Collins / The Forecaster

FREEPORT — Under the town’s zoning, only a handful of businesses meet the requirements to operate a food truck. But the owners of an antique and home decor store on the southern end of Route 1 are hoping to change that.

Amanda and Nicholas Kent, who own Maine Wicked Goods Mercantile, have asked the Planning Board to consider allowing food trucks or “mobile food vending” in their part of town, arguing it would bring more vitality, interest and economic development to their neighborhood.

The Planning Board was set to discuss the Kents’ request on Wednesday, after The Forecaster’s print deadline.

A food trailer next to Maine Wicked Goods in Freeport offered Mexican-type dishes for a limited time this summer. The mobile eatery closed after the owners, Amanda and Nicholas Kent, were told the use didn’t comply with the zoning. Kate Irish Collins / The Forecaster

Assistant Planner Caroline Pelletier said she doesn’t expect any board action this week on the food truck proposal. The Town Council will make the final decision.

In a memo to the Planning Board, Pelletier noted there are a number of standards that any food trucks in the district would have to comply with, including standards for signs, design, landscaping and pedestrian and vehicular access.

The council first allowed limited food truck operation in 2014. Since then, according to Amanda Kent, the Maine Beer Company, a brewery with a tasting room, is the only business in the district that’s qualified to have a food truck on its property.

She said the southern Route 1 corridor of Freeport doesn’t have the same commercial draw as downtown. Allowing food trucks to operate at the southern section of Route 1 could draw more customers.

Kent said there are many workers in the area who have few options when it comes to getting a meal to go. While there are several sit-down restaurants, there are not many places to get take out. And, she said, there’s also not a lot of variety in the food that is readily available.

Between an L.L. Bean office building and Power Engineering, Kent said there are well over 400 local workers “who are searching for quick lunch options.”

Kent said that, unlike the more congested downtown area, the shops along the southern end of Route 1 have ample parking and the setbacks to allow for food truck operation.

Kent said the issue arose this summer when the couple’s tenant opened a food trailer next to their antique store. The Kents soon learned though, that their tenant needed a victualer’s license and food trucks weren’t allowed on their property under current zoning.

Food trucks, Kent said, would “bring business to our businesses.”

“A rising tide lifts all boats, and this would really bring people to the area,” Kent said. “We think anyone (here) should be allowed to have a food truck.”

Kent doesn’t know if her tenant would be interested in continuing to operate her food trailer if the town decides to allow it, but said overall “it’s been very frustrating” not to have that option available.

“I just hope the (Planning Board) gives this some consideration,” Kent said.

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