SF: New Food Truck Coming to Divisadero; Outrage Ensues

Emeryville-based food truck called "Docs of the Bay"

By Andrew Dudley | Haighteration.com

Emeryville-based food truck called "Docs of the Bay"

An Emeryville-based food truck called Docs of the Bay has applied for a permit to set up shop on the 300 block of Divisadero.

Cue the outrage!

On April 6th, Docs filed a permit to park their truck in front of 312 Divisadero, where they’d like to serve up “burgers, french fries, black bean burgers, mac & cheese and drinks.” They’re also seeking spots in the Mission, Financial District, and SOMA.

312 Divisadero is the current address of Thai restaurant Thai Place II. Docs of the Bay’s permit application for the Divisadero spot covers all but the 3am-6am hours, Wednesdays through Sundays — though, they’re applying for the same hours at other locations, so presumably they would only be at the Divisadero location for a fraction of that time period.

Divisadero has been a hotbed of NIMBY action lately, what with the Chase bank saga and the Ragazza patio drama — so it’s no surprise that some neighbors have already started organizing against the food truck.

Twitter user @ryanaround tipped us to the food truck’s plans on April 9th. Barely a week later, Haighteration reader Carissa K. found a flyer on her door asking her to join a petition against it.

The flyer, titled “HELP US STOP FOOD TRUCKS ALONG DIVISADERO!”, reads:


There is a request for a permit to Docs of the Bay, a food truck selling hamburgers, fries and macaroni and cheese to inhabit spot at 312 Divisadero (directly in front of Thai Place II infringing on the Cleaners and Madusalon as well). They are requesting hours from 12 AM to 3 AM and then from 6 AM to 12AM, Wednesday through Sunday.

Food trucks belong in areas which do not have food establishments, not primarily residential neighborhoods – there are many venues for such businesses, such as Fort Mason, Stanyan at Waller, Fifth and Minna, Civic Center Plaza, UN Plaza which are appropriate locations.

The presence of a food truck in our neighborhood will have a negative impact for the following reasons:

1 – The 12am – 3am time slot is aimed to serve those leaving the bars, and will encourage lingering and congregating in the early morning hours disturbing residents.

2 – It will create litter – trash, food remnants will clutter the sidewalks, streets and yards.

3 – Not having a bathroom available for their customers will encourage people to use sidewalks and yards for this purpose.

4 – During business hours and early evening it will create/congest traffic and take up business and residential parking spaces.

5 – It will encourage double parking or parking in neighboring driveways while they visit the food truck.

6 – It will take business away from existing neighborhood restaurants (of which there are many) which serve similar type food items and beverages and pay more taxes. These brick and mortar businesses have a much higher cost of doing business than the food trucks and puts them at a definite disadvantage. Does the city want more store vacancies in the neighborhoods?

It then encourages recipients to sign the paper and mail it to the Department of Public Works. The flyer is attributed to four residents, who list their names and email addresses.

We’ve heard from various residents who are excited about the truck, noting a dearth of late-night dining options in the area. We’ve also reached out to several nearby business owners.

Bob Wait, who runs The Page bar, supports the truck.

“Divisadero can use more late night options so we’re happy to have them — assuming of course they keep residents happy by managing noise and trash responsibly,” Wait says. “We’ll see how it goes!”

We’re waiting to hear back from other Divis merchants, and the Docs folks themselves. We’ll update this story with any additional comments.

In the meantime, the public comment period with the Department of Public Works will be open until May 6th, so email dpw@sfdpw.org if you’d like to voice your support or opposition. And if you’d like to meet the Docs of the Bay team, they’ll be setting up at the Homestead (at 19th and Folsom) this Sunday night.

(Needless to say, if you determine their burgers to be Divisadero-worthy, let us know.)

http://www.haighteration.com/2011/04/new-food-truck-coming-to-divisadero-outrage-ensues.html