The Island Frenchie is back in the form of a food truck, and is operating six days a week from a Tahi Road location after consent problems closed the popular shipping container eatery in Oneroa.
Island Frenchie owner Nico Fini has just returned from a trip home to Europe and says “nothing further has happened” towards him getting his Oneroa premises consented and open again for businesses.
Nico says he is still paying “huge” rent on the unusable site in Oneroa and says he “has to go to plan B” to keep things afloat. “I took some pretty bad advice from some pretty average consultants”, says Nico. The local consultants advised the structure, although commercial, did not need consent due to the container’s 30-metre dimensions that were erroneously deemed as ‘low risk’ structures, and thus exempt as per a 2020 law change. “Then the council said the container was unlawful, and I had to get retrospective consent”, says Nico.
Getting this has proved extremely difficult, he says. Auckland Council did offer extensions, but as of late May, he was informed he would be fined if he continued to operate from Oneroa- necessitating the move to a food truck on a property he owns on Tahi Road. He expects his final bill for getting the Ocean View Spot signed off “ will be upwards of $80,000.”
He says the whole process has been extremely stressful and thinks the council’s actions are “not right”, and that they are “looking for reasons to stop you (from trading), instead of offering constructive solutions.” • Jim Birchall
Full story in this week’s Gulf News… Out Now!!!