KELOWNA – A Mexican food truck based out of Tofino will be joining Vietnam Village in City Park this summer.
TacoFino currently operates three food trucks in Tofino and Vancouver and was recently featured on Food Network’s Eat Street. Last year they were also awarded Vancouver’s Best Curbside Cuisine by Vancouver Magazine.
City property manager Ron Forbes says the two successful bidders, TacoFino and Wafelicious, were found after an extensive search.
“In February of this year, property management staff issued a bidding opportunity and as we had limited response to the bids last year, staff increased the efforts to ensure a wide variety of promotion,” he says.
The opportunity was advertised on the city’s website, their Facebook page and Twitter. It was also advertised in local newspapers, the DKA newsletter and the Vancouver and Calgary Food Truck Associations.
“This year we had six different vendors apply for the spots,” Forbes says. “The vendors were evaluated on their experience, qualifications, proposed food items, prices and overall proposed value or rent to the city.”
On Monday, Council awarded three-year leases to TacoFino and Wafelicious, who will join Vietnam Village in City Park next to the Children’s Water Park starting next month.
TacoFino offers a variety of tacos, including tuna, Baja-style fish, free-range lemongrass chicken tacos, as well as burritos and other Mexican fare. Wafelicious will have a new summertime menu featuring Liege Waffles with farmgate fruit compote, valley apple pie, caramel banana split and strawberries and cream.
Both trucks are expected to be operational sometime in May, with TacoFino paying $3,750 per year, and Wafelicious paying $1,500 the first year, $1700 the second and $1900 the third year.
Coun. Gail Given asked why there was such a discrepancy in the rents.
“When you compare the two contracts, it’s the same pad, how do we justify that?” she asked.
“Because we had limited responses in the past we did not want to impose a minimum bid price but rather wanted to encourage participation,” Forbes says. “We did not put a minimum bid and say that’s what they had to pay for rent. TacoFino felt they would be able to generate that amount of business with the food they’re offering.”
Both operations will be evaluated by city staff over the next two years.
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