Vending at UT Health Sciences

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I know a lot of you vend at UT. Since talking with my friend Derrick Clark, who warned me things might be changing for you at UT, I’ve been trying to get accurate information about the vending situation there. Having conferred with Pam Houston who is the Special Events Manager at UT Health Sciences, here is the deal:

UT is building a food court. They will be renting space to restaurants. Like you see at the mall or at University of Memphis or at many other health care facilities. The timeline is not completely certain but they will probably have the food court completed in late February.

From that point forward, food trucks will no longer be welcome near UT facilities anymore on a regular basis. They may do occasional special events and First Friday events but we will not be allowed to vend lunch near 930 Madison anymore. UT has its own police department and they will run you off. This is no fun but it is understandable, we would be interfering with the revenue of the restaurants and with the royalties they pay UT.

We thought this was coming, and MFTA had been trying to set up a way for us to vend in Health Sciences Park instead. But as many of you know, Health Sciences Park was suddenly sold to a private entity a few weeks ago so they could remove the Confederate statue from it. We had to start over. The new management entity (Memphis Greenspace) is not going to allow any food trucks to vend in Health Sciences Park in the near future although they haven’t ruled it out in the future and we hope this position will change. I will stay on them.

I’ve double-checked the zoning and the food truck ordinance and it is completely legal for us to vend from the metered parking spaces adjacent to Health Sciences Park on Manassas and on Dunlap. This would appear to be the closest place we can access these customers without permission from a private party. It would be necessary to go out early enough to get a space. If you know of another possibility let me know.