City gives vendors OK to set up on waterfront

Posted Feb. 19, 2010, at 8:52 p.m.

BANGOR, Maine — City councilors gave the go-ahead this week to allow the Bangor Parks and Recreation Department to lease space adjacent to the city’s waterfront for seasonal food vendors.

Members of the council’s business and economic development committee supported the idea, which came up recently when a prospective vendor approached the city.

“When we were approached, the thought was to take a closer look at what we do regarding space on the waterfront,” Parks and Recreation Director Tracy Willette said. “This is somewhat experimental for us.”

The space in question is on Railroad Street, near the corner of Front Street. The area has easy access to water and electricity and allows for good visibility without cluttering the waterfront park, according to Willette.

“As the waterfront continues to evolve and develop, we want to balance providing more amenities for visitors with maintaining the appearance of the waterfront,” Willette said recently.

The city will make available four lots for vendors to operate from May 24 through Oct. 3 at a fee of $1,500 or from June 28 through Sept. 6 at a fee of $1,000. Spots would be sold first come, first served, and vendors would have to adhere to a set of guidelines spelled out in the application.

One of the biggest stipulations is that the vendors would not be allowed to operate during a specific event, such as the American Folk Festival, which brings in its own concession vendors.

Willette said since the idea was first brought up, a handful of potential vendors have expressed interest and all have been positive.

Councilor David Nealley supported the idea, but he said the city should notify abutting landowners and businesses as a courtesy. Councilor Rick Bronson said the city was wise to update its policy as the waterfront continues to grow as a destination.

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