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Could mobile ice cream trucks return to Orillia's streets?

City staff will prepare report on feasibility of ice cream trucks on residential streets; councillors stress safety is main concern
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Jeff Klassen/Village Media file photo

A city councillor is looking to bring back the good old days of ice cream trucks travelling Orillia’s streets.

During Monday’s council committee meeting, Coun. Mason Ainsworth asked staff to prepare a report on the feasibility of allowing mobile ice cream trucks to operate on streets in residential areas of town. That is not permitted at the moment.

“Quite a few people have brought this up,” Ainsworth said, noting staff prepared a related report during the last term of council and he wanted an updated one.

Coun. Jay Fallis said someone brought it to his attention, too, near the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic.

In speaking with staff, he said, one of the main issues that came up was safety.

“I think it’s certainly something worth looking into,” Fallis said, adding he hoped staff would look at the potential for allowing the trucks in designated areas.

Safety was also top of mind for Coun. Ralph Cipolla, for a personal reason.

“Believe me, I can speak from some experience. Because of an ice cream truck, my nephew ran across the street from the backyard, got hit by a car and passed away. He was six years old. So, I think the safety issue here is really important,” he said.

“I have no problem in allowing them to be in a park or whatever, but I think staff needs to look at the safety of having a truck like this, where kids can run across the street to get their ice cream.”

Ainsworth expressed his regrets for Cipolla’s loss and said safety would be one of the “primary items” addressed in the report.

Council committee supported Ainsworth’s motion, and staff will report back at a later date.