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Street Food Carts or Trucks

See also: Construction Permit - Establishing Use

What Is It?

A black woman with thought bubbles that have street food carts and trucks in them.You can sell food from a street food truck or a trailer on private property under certain conditions. You may or may not need a permit from us depending on the circumstances. Learn more about street-food vending in Seattle, including regulations, permits, and licenses required by other agencies.

Note: Property owners should consult with the Department of Public Health-Seattle and King County to understand requirements related to overnight or permanent operations.

What Permits Do You Need?

You don’t need a construction or use permit to sell food on private property if you:

  • Are located in a non-residential zone
  • Have permission from the owner of the property
  • Don’t stay there overnight
  • Park in an area used for parking
  • Are located at least 50 feet from any residentially-zoned property

Intermittent temporary use permits. A temporary use permit allows you to operate for two days a week in zones where it might otherwise not be allowed. You can ask a planner, using our online form, to help you determine if your project might need a temporary intermittent use permit.

Permanent use permits. This permit allows you to sell food in a specific location on private property, which requires a construction permit to establish use.

Street use vending permits. See the Seattle Department of Transportation’s Street Use Vending Permits page to determine what other permits you may need.

You may also need to apply for electrical service changes or new services from Seattle City Light.

Research the Code

Read the Seattle Municipal Code (SMC) section on general use provisions, SMC 23.42.040.

Should You Hire a Professional?

You may prepare your plans yourself or hire a professional to help you.

Construction and Inspections

Nathan Torgelson, Director
Address: 700 5th Ave, Suite 2000, Seattle, WA, 98104
Mailing Address: P.O. Box 34019, Seattle, WA, 98124-4019
Phone: (206) 684-8600
Phone Alt: Violation Complaint Line: (206) 615-0808
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SDCI issues land use, construction, and trade permits, conducts construction and housing-related inspections, ensures compliance with our codes, and regulates rental rules. SDCI is committed to an antiracist workplace and to addressing racism through our work in the community.