City staff recommend permanently permitting bike vending after a two-year pilot project. (Nicole Crescenzi/News Staff)

City of Victoria looks to permanenetly approve bike vendors

A two-year bike vending pilot project is coming to an end

A bicycle vending pilot launched in 2017 to allow mobile vendors the ability to sell their products across town could become permanent.

City of Victoria staff recommended giving the project the green light after reviewing feedback from participants.

Approved sale items include flowers, food which requires minimum preparation, non-alcoholic beverages, ice cream and baked goods.

While the initial uptake to the pilot wasn’t huge, vendors who did purchase the $100 business license were happy to have the option available, especially during summer months.

“The strengths of the project are allowing entrepreneurs like myself to access a market not currently utilized properly, and allows a green service to residents of Victoria,” said Aaron Watson, owner of Curbside Treats Victoria Inc. in an emailed response to the City. Watson was the first person granted a business license under the pilot.

ALSO READ: Red tape waived for mobile street vendors

David Delaney sold homemade lemonade freeze pops under the name Niceicles, and wrote about the low cost of the license, as well as the perk of being able to follow a crowd. The mobility of the business had drawbacks, however.

“It is tough to find a spot that affords you visibility and foot traffic, the downtown core is saturated, people don’t even consider a bike vendor down there as there is some much else going on,” Delaney wrote. “One of the biggest issues not having a fixed location is no one can plan to come visit you, repeat customers are always by chance. Having a few fixed locations in the downtown core would allow locals and tourist alike to become familiar with seeing bike vendors.

ALSO READ: Just over half of Victoria U-Bicycles remain on city streets

City staff have recommended allowing vendors to park at yellow-painted curbs for up to one hour at a time, as well as allowing them to work at city parks, excluding Beacon Hill Park.

Vendors can have limited noise, including ringing a bell for short increments.

City staff recommended continuing limited business hours from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m.

The proposal will come under review on Thursday, March 14.

nicole.crescenzi@vicnews.com


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