Most downtown legal marijuana dispensaries would be banned under mayor’s proposal


A green cross indicating medical marijuana is seen in the window at the Higher Path dispensary in the Sherman Oaks area of Los Angeles, California, December 27, 2017. – At the stroke of midnight on January 1, pot lovers in California may raise a joint, instead of a glass of champagne. America’s wealthiest state is legalizing the growth, sale and consumption of recreational marijuana, opening the door to the world’s biggest market. (Photo by Robyn Beck / AFP) (Photo credit should read ROBYN BECK/AFP/Getty Images)

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CHICAGO – When marijuana becomes legal at the beginning of the year, don’t expect dispensaries in the Loop.

The Chicago Tribune reports under Mayor Lightfoot’s new zoning proposal, dispensaries would be banned in the Central Business District.

The district is zoned by Lake Michigan to the east, Ida B. Wells Drive to the south, the Chicago River to the west and Oak St. to the north. In River North, anything east of LaSalle would be banned.

City officials said the reason for excluding dispensaries downtown is due to population density and tourism.

“We will be ensuring that legalization not only creates new revenues for our city, but also unique opportunities for entrepreneurs from communities victimized by [the] War on Drugs to be at the forefront of developing equity and wealth from this emerging industry,” Mayor Lightfoot said in a statement.

The proposal also bans marijuana consumption in public places, the Chicago Sun-Times reports.

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