Sometimes, no news is good news. Samuel Burke tells CHS he never heard any objections from Mayor Ed Murray’s office by the December 4th deadline to reply to his application for a retail marijuana shop at 15th Ave E and E Republican. That should mean Burke’s proposed location is officially a go.
According to state law, a retail marijuana shop must keep a 1,000-foot buffer from schools, parks, or community centers. Initially, city and state officials thought the 15th Ave location was too close to the Parkside School daycare. But with the city’s tacit approval of the location, Burke can now forge ahead with his application at the Liquor Control Board
If all goes according to plan, Burke told CHS he would be opening Capitol Hill’s first retail marijuana shop in early 2015 inside the space currently occupied by the Capitol Hill Animal Clinic.
Burke has also settled on a name for his new venture: tōk. “It has some elegance,” he said.
A person familiar with the situation at the clinic told CHS the vet’s lease is up in January. Dr. Kris Boudreaux, who owns the animal clinic but not the building, had previously declined to comment on the application or the future of her business.
Burke told CHS he will submit the next round of required paperwork to the state in the coming days, which will include a lease agreement, floor plan, and security plan for the business.
In November, CHS obtained a copy of Burke’s initial application for a 15th Ave location, which also detailed the months Burke spent trying to find a permissible location for his business. On his application Burke estimated it would cost $187,000 to open a 15th Ave E store and indicated he would not use any outside investors.
The city’s silence on Burke’s location doesn’t mean tōk is totally in the clear. The Mount Calvary Christian Center is vowing to continue its fight to shut down Uncle Ike’s pot shop at 23 and Union, claiming Ike’s violated I-502 by opening down the street from the church’s teen center. The church recently lost its bid for a temporary injunction on the shop, but the larger case against the shop, state, and city will go to trial next year.
Meanwhile, the city is vowing to crack down on pot delivery services, which are illegal and not allowed for under I-502. The Stranger reports the city is considering using a “one-strike” rule where delivery services would be given the chance to skirt felony charges if they shut down immediately.