The San Diego Planning Commission voted 4-2 recently to give final approval to the Patients Cooperative, allowing it to become the fourth such business the city has authorized.
In 2014, the City Council passed an ordinance allowing medical marijuana dispensaries, but requiring them to be far removed from youth-oriented facilities and prohibiting them from being closer than 1,000 feet from one another.
The first dispensary approved by the city has already opened in Otay Mesa. Two others approved in San Ysidro and Kearny Mesa are expected to open later this spring.
The approval for Point Loma Patients Cooperative effectively kills the chances of at least four other nearby proposed dispensaries. A maximum of four dispensaries are allowed in each of the city’s nine council districts. Some council districts, however, do not have zoning which would allow any dispensaries to be sited there.
Contacted by The Beacon, Patients Cooperative spokesman Abhay Schweitzer deferred to Bartell & Associates, consultants representing their dispensary.
Adrian Kwiatkowski of Bartell & Associates said the building the medical marijuana cooperative is moving into on Hancock Street “will undergo interior and exterior tenant improvements taking a few months to complete.”
Kwiatkowski said plans are for the new cooperative to open in June, pending an occupancy permit from the city.
Concerning lease restrictions and security for the new dispensary, Kwiatkowski said hours will be from 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. He added two state-licensed professional security officers will be required onsite. Security will also include internal and external security cameras.
“Eight on-site parking spaces are required including disabled parking,” Kwiatkowski said adding, “There will also be an electric car charging station. There are also two on-street parking spaces directly in front of the location.”
The consultant said the Hancock site was chosen by the medical marijuana cooperative because of its “central location near the Sports Arena with convenient access from I-5 and I-8.”
Kwiatkowski also pointed out that the new Midway cooperative will be “the first LEED-certified medical marijuana dispensary in the United States. We are installing energy-efficient lighting, windows, solar panels, clean air HVAC and water-saving plumbing fixtures (good timing with the drought).”