Richmond can accommodate 3-5 additional retail cannabis businesses, an estimation based upon considering the city’s population density and the level of nearby competition, according to an analysis conducted by city staff.
That doesn’t necessarily mean the city — where currently three retail cannabis dispensaries are permitted to operate — will end up allowing that many.
Late last year, Richmond City Council voted to instruct city staff to collaborate with the Economic Development Commission to research expansion in the number of allowable cannabis retail locations in the city, with an eye on increasing equity in the industry. This followed a prospective dispensary’s request to amend the city’s cannabis ordinance to add one additional dispensary permit.
In its analysis, city staff looked at population size and density, competition from surrounding cities and counties and consumer demand for cannabis products in the area.
City staff is recommending a conservative, moderate and aggressive approach to amending the number of allowable permits in the ordinance. The conservative approach would allow two additional storefront retail locations (one for and equity applicant and one for a non-equity applicant). The moderate approach would allow three additional storefront retail locations (two for equity applicants and one for non-equity applicant), as well as two delivery-only retail locations (both for equity applicants). The aggressive approach would allow four additional storefront retail locations (three equity applicants and one non-equity applicant), and two delivery-only retail locations (both for equity applicants).
City staff recently presented its findings and recommendations to the Economic Development Commission and is scheduled to present them again to the city’s Planning Commission on Thursday. The City Council would ultimately make the final determination.