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City Hall quiet as plans for Capitol Hill pot shop tōk move forward

A sign of pot's maturing presence around central Seattle, Uncle Ike's gets an upgrade (Photo: CHS)

A sign of retail pot’s maturing presence around central Seattle, Uncle Ike’s gets a signage upgrade (Photo: Uncle Ike’s)

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.

A 1,000 ft. buffer around the future home of tōk.

A 1,000 ft. buffer around the future home of tōk.

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.

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19 Comments
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Ebe
Ebe
5 years ago

If a school, park, or community center wants to open within the 1000′ buffer at some point in the future, are they allowed? While I am all for retail marijuana, I am curious how these shops will effect the choices of adjacent property owners in the future

Tymer
Tymer
5 years ago

I’m also all for pot stores, but I hope the displaced vet’s clients can find comparable care without too much upset.

Jim98122x
Jim98122x
5 years ago
Reply to  Tymer

So you’re immeditately assuming the vet is disappearing from Capitol Hill? Why?

Why Not?
Why Not?
5 years ago

Any particular reason for your unhappiness or is it just general malaise?

The Hill has other vets.

jseattle
Admin
5 years ago
Reply to  Why Not?

The commenter you are replying to asked for her comment to be removed because she inadvertently used her full name

choices
choices
5 years ago
Reply to  Why Not?

I’m not sure who you’re responding to, but seems like a snide comment. I suppose if you had a private practice doctor that you loved in your neighborhood, who lost the lease on their office and had to leave the neighborhood, you wouldn’t be bummed? Not really a good example, but is it really that hard to understand why someone would be sad to see something they care about priced out of their neighborhood? Or is empathy a foreign concept to you? Personally, I live 2 blocks from this place, and they’ve therefore become the vet for my cats. And yes, there are other vets, but I like these people, and I don’t have a car. Any other vet would be too far to just carry my cat to. This clinic has been there for a really long time, and if this guy actively outbid them on the lease, knowing it would result in them having to move out of their home, that’s extremely messed up. That may not be the case at all, but if I find out it is, they won’t get my business. Which would make me sad, as I’m definitely a potential customer.

jomamas
jomamas
5 years ago
Reply to  choices

I’m confused. You’re upset that your vet is moving but the gravity of your unhappiness will depend on how they purchased the real estate or how much they paid? Can you explain to me how capitalism works? Don’t get me wrong, I can sympathize that you might have to find a vet that is a longer walk for you but without much context, how do you know that this vet didn’t willingly let his lease lapse? How do you know he wasn’t paid to relocate? There are just a lot of details here that we don’t know about so to assume he was priced out unwillingly is a bit premature.

choices
choices
5 years ago
Reply to  jomamas

I’m not upset about anything, I was questioning how someone might not understand why someone would be upset about a business they care about being priced out/outbid or whatever, and moving away; hell, even if they are closing of their own free will, that could still cause some sadness among it’s customers. And if you don’t understand that, then we really have nothing to talk about; you’re either too young to get it, or too callous. Good for you, must make life easy.

If this potential shop owner and the landlord have made some sort of deal behind the current tenant’s back, that would be extremely jerkish of them, and worth being upset about. But you’ll note I said “if I find out it is”, not “I am”; I don’t know what’s going on, nor do I claim to know, and I’m not upset at this point, and didn’t say I was. If the clinic is gone of it’s own free will, then I’ll still be disappointed, but not upset, and I’ll enjoy the new business. I have no idea what the truth is now, I just hate when I see people on here who seem to have no sympathy for others who care about something, even if it might seem a bit irrational. These folks often say things like “get over it”, “move on” or something about “how capitalism works”. Maybe being overly concerned with capitalism leaves little energy for sympathy?

Anonymous
Anonymous
5 years ago
Reply to  choices

Everything that is Being done right now is behind the backs of the Vet and employees that work at this Clinic. The landlord wont disclose information and everyone who works here found out about this from Mr. Burke intruding and taking pictures outside the clinic.

Anonymous
Anonymous
5 years ago
Reply to  Why Not?

Yea but will these other Vets take the employees that work at this current Vet? People are going to lose their jobs.

Anonymous
Anonymous
5 years ago
Reply to  Why Not?

Everything that is Being done right now is behind the backs of the Vet and employees that work at this Clinic. The landlord wont disclose information and everyone who works here found out about this from Mr. Burke intruding and taking pictures outside the clinic.

Timmy73
Timmy73
5 years ago

That seems like a large space for a pot shop. I’ve yet to visit one but imagine they don’t need that much square feet. They don’t grow and sell in the same location, do they?

citycat
citycat
5 years ago

“Burke has also settled on a name for his new venture: tōk. “It has some elegance,” he said.” That is a really dorky statement.

calhoun
5 years ago

I’m so glad to hear that the City is cracking down on the pot delivery businesses. This is overdue. They are clearly illegal because they don’t always require a medical authorization, and obviously are not allowed under I-502. They are no different than a street dealer.

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[…] are looking into better local management of the I-502 process. In the meantime, Capitol Hill may see its first store in […]

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[…] In the meantime, 2015 could see the opening of the first I-502 marijuana store on Capitol Hill as Tok makes plans to open on 15th Ave E. […]

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[…] one last note: The timeline for an I-502 store opening on 15th Ave E is getting moved back again. Samuel Burke told CHS he now hopes to open tōk sometime in […]

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[…] December, the city gave Burke the green light to open a shop at 15th and Republican as it never filed any objections by the December […]

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[…] this year, the I-502 lottery winner was well on his way to opening a pot shop inside the now-shuttered Capitol Hill Veterinary Clinic when Uncle Ike’s […]