Some East Van shops not as lucky in moving forward in medical marijuana application process

Photo: Getty Images - So far, 11 out of the 176 applications for medical marijuana dispensaries have been approved by the city.

Photo: Getty Images – So far, 11 out of the 176 applications for medical marijuana dispensaries have been approved by the city.

The City of Vancouver recently sent out letters 11 out of 176 medical marijuana dispensary applications advising them they can move forward in the application process, yet some businesses with two locations are only allowed to move forward with one development permit review.

The approved businesses meeting the zoning requirements will get to move forward with with development for a permit review, which includes the opportunity for public input. One East Vancouver business with two locations, however, will only get to move forward in the application process with one of its shops.

Photo: Facebook - Only one of the two Sea to Sky Alternative Healing Society locations will get to move forward in the application process.

Photo: Facebook – Only one of the two Sea to Sky Alternative Healing Society locations will get to move forward in the application process.

Sea to Sky’s road narrowing

The Sea to Sky Alternative Healing Society, which has locations at East 2nd Avenue and Fraser Street,  applied to the city to have both locations evaluated for the zoning and business licensing regulations.

Kwan Lee, the director at Seat to Sky, said only one of the shops will get to move forward in the application process.

“The Fraser location will stay open, but the one on East 2nd will not be moving forward in the application process, ” he said.

What’s next

The requirements for approved dispensaries  says they are to stay at least 300 meters away from schools, community centers and other marijuana-related businesses.

Locations who have not met the zoning requirements will not be able to continue in the permitting process at their current locations. They will have six months to find a different site that meets all zoning requirements and submit a development permit for the new location.

“We [the East 2nd shop], will stay open for as long as possible,” Lee said. “At least there’s a time frame in order to relocate.”

While the development permit process for the applicants is set to begin in early November, businesses that didn’t apply for a license will be forced to shut their doors immediately, or be subject to enforcement action.

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