Normal’s medical cannabis dispensary wants to sell recreational cannabis too.
The Green Solution, 501 W. Northtown Road, has applied for a special use permit from the Town of Normal. Its request will be heard by the Normal Zoning Board of Appeals on Jan. 28. If approved, the Normal Town Council would consider the request at its Feb. 3 meeting.
If approved there, and if it obtains a state license, it would be the first recreational cannabis dispensary in McLean County. Recreational cannabis became legal Jan. 1, but customers from Bloomington-Normal have had to travel to Champaign-Urbana, Springfield, or Peoria to buy it legally.
The Green Solution’s ownership remains in flux. An official with Jushi, a Denver-based cannabis company, said in November that his company planned to buy The Green Solution in Normal and possibly open a second dispensary in Bloomington. Jushi already had a “strategic partnership” with The Green Solution, which also operates in Colorado.
Also in November, a separate company, Columbia Care Inc., said it was buying The Green Solution in a $140 million deal focused on the Colorado market. It’s unclear what that sale means for The Green Solution’s two Illinois locations in Normal and Sauget, near St. Louis.
The Green Solution has declined repeated requests for comment. Messages left with Jushi and Columbia Care were not immediately returned Tuesday.
Regardless, The Green Solution’s application for a special use permit in Normal would not be impacted by an ownership change as long as they don’t make any changes.
“In other words, they’d be bound by all terms of the approved special use permit, including the site itself (parking, building size, lighting, etc.) and/or the operation plan,” said Normal Town Planner Mercy Davison.
Medical cannabis dispensaries got a head start when recreational cannabis became legal Jan. 1. Medical dispensaries were allowed to apply for a same-site recreational license—what The Green Solution in Normal would do—or apply to open a second location nearby.
There are now 46 approved recreational cannabis dispensary licenses in Illinois.
In the coming months, new applicants—including social equity applicants—will have the opportunity to apply for an additional 75 recreational cannabis licenses.
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