Glenview plan commissioners voted 5-0 on Tuesday night in favor of recommending a proposed medical marijuana dispensary in the village.
The plan for the dispensary, which would be called Greeleaf Organics, is now scheduled to go before the Board of Trustees next Tuesday.
If the state licenses the dispensary, Greenleaf Organics would be the only such establishment allowed to operate in both Northfield and New Trier townships, according to law.
The shop would take up 2,300 square feet of space near the intersection of West Lake Avenue and Greenwood Road in northwestern part of Glenview and would be owned by Glenview resident Julie Stone.
Glenview plan commissioners previously considered the proposed dispensary at an Aug. 26 public hearing. Some community members questioned whether the West Lake Avenue location was the best place for a dispensary, saying that parking in the area is an issue. Some pointed to the character of the area, saying the location is not appropriate because it is next to a residential area and is frequented by children.
Since state law allowing medicinal use of marijuana took effect Jan. 1, business owners like Stone have approached local municipalities. The state’s four-year pilot program permits 22 licensed cultivation centers and up to 60 dispensaries statewide.
Under the state law, cultivation centers cannot be within 2,500 feet of a school, day care or residential district. Dispensing centers, which are licensed by the state, cannot be within 1,000 feet of a school or day care or in a residential district.
Although the state law pre-empts municipalities’ authority, local villages still can regulate where medical marijuana dispensaries can be located.
In Glenview, officials decided to restrict medical marijuana cultivation centers and dispensaries to industrial districts within the village.
Greenleaf Organics would be complying with those rules as its proposed location is in an industrially zoned area at 3240 W. Lake Ave. The center is expected to serve about 500 patients who would be able to get medical marijuana.
The dispensary’s proposed hours are 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Mondays and Thursdays, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Fridays and 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturdays, according to village documents.
Tuesday night, Stone’s team presented the Glenview Plan Commission with two parking plans for the area that could be worked out among the different tenants that share the lot, which include CrossFit Haven and Illinois Glassworks.
Both plans gave Greenleaf Organics between three to four parking spots in the lot and included the owner’s intention to lease eight parking spaces off-site for the use by its employees. Owners of Greenleaf Organics said the dispensary would be responsible for snow removal at its designated spaces.
Some of the tenants did not seem to agree on the current parking arrangements. Russell Carr, who represented CrossFit Haven at the meeting, said the presence of Greenleaf Organics would hurt business because the lot is already tight on parking, yet the buildings’ landlord Marvin Harris told the commissioners the opposite.
“There is more than enough parking there,” Harris said during the meeting.
In the end, commissioners agreed to put a condition into its recommendation that would approve any parking plan the businesses come to an agreement on as long as it includes an appropriate number of parking spaces for Greenleaf Organics that is required by village code.
“We’ve been, frankly, dragged into parking talk for two meetings now,” said Commissioner Allan Ruter during the meeting. “It’s frustrating because it reflects a certain (disagreement) among the tenants over which we have no control.”
Commissioner Ellen Dickson asked the village staff to clarify a concern one resident brought up in a letter about an Armenian school being within a 1,000-foot limit of the dispensary.
Jeff Brady, the village’s director of planning, said that based on the village’s legal research the school in question, which is a Sunday school, doesn’t fit the state definition of schools in the law, which includes any nonpublic or public elementary and secondary schools.
Copyright © 2014, Chicago Tribune
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