As Reef and other ghost kitchen operators have learned, municipal approval is a lynchpin vital to the present and future of the category. Last week, commissioners in its hometown of Miami unanimously renewed an ordinance created to regulate app-based delivery and virtual restaurants, which the ghost operator hopes will serve as a framework for other cities across the globe.

Reef bills itself as the largest operator of virtual restaurants, logistics and proximity hubs in North America, and the company is also expanding outside of North America. Its vessels typically operate in parking lots, and tend to fall between traditional brick-and-mortar establishments and food trucks, which have created challenges in municipal approval as the company scales up and enters new markets.

“We are thankful to the city of Miami, the Mayor, and the Commissioners, for their front-footedness and willingness to serve as a model for other cities. The continuation of the ordinance will help create jobs here in Miami and emphasizes Reef eagerness to be a partner to cities,” said Reef CEO Ari Ojalvo. “We are proud to call Miami home.”

Other cities, including Orlando, Dallas, and Vancouver, are in the process of reviewing policies similar to the first-of-its-kind Miami ordinance, all of which would regulate alternative non-parking applications for existing parking infrastructure, creating a more applicable framework for Reef’s vessels to operate.

Miami City Commissioner Ken Russell, who introduced the legislation a year ago, said, “Last year’s pilot was incredibly successful, and we are excited to continue to meet our residents’ needs by working with innovative companies like Reef on issues that range from job creation to the use of biodegradable packaging.”

“Miami is a hub of innovation, so why shouldn’t our laws also be innovative? We are proud to work with Reef on this policy framework and look forward to continuing to partner with the city’s business community to make a more vibrant, resilient, and inclusive Miami,” said Miami Mayor Francis Suarez.

Reef Mobile Operation Units alone account for 477 jobs across Miami where its global headquarters is also based. Last year, the company also unveiled a national “Neighborhood Career Center Initiative” in its hometown, which seeks to provide job placement opportunities for at-risk and underserved communities, including for over 1000 positions it seeks to fill in Miami over the next 2.5 years.