Lanesborough cannabis shop closer to fall opening

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LANESBOROUGH — Lanesborough's first recreational marijuana shop could open by year's end.

Liberty Market Properties has begun converting a portion of the former Lanesboro Super Market on North Main Street (Route 7) into a cannabis dispensary.

Developer Ken Crowley says he holds a provisional license for the pot shop from the state Cannabis Control Commission. If the CCC grants a final license in a timely manner, Crowley says, the store could open in October or November.

Two years after proposing Liberty Market, Crowley and co-owner Paul Bohannon received final approval Monday from the town. The Lanesborough Planning Board signed off on revisions to facade improvements.

"Dealing with the town has been excellent," Crowley told The Eagle. "Some townspeople have had concerns, but I think they will all be comfortable with what they see once we're open."

Liberty Market will occupy only 3,000 square feet of the 16,000-square-foot building the developer bought in March for $475,000, according to official Berkshire real estate transactions. The rest of the space is being set aside for a future tenant.

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Crowley declined to say how much the company is spending on startup costs, such as renovations to the southern section of the building.

According to architectural plans, the storefront will have new windows, a secure entrance, security lights and cameras.

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"I like the new look, and I'm very supportive of where we are," Planning Board member Barbara Davis-Hassan said during Monday's meeting.

Brent White, the project engineer, said: "At the conclusion of the project, you'll have a much more prominent building for the area."

The developer plans landscaping, with employee parking to the rear of the building.

The shop is located on 2.5 acres just south and across from the Lanesborough Police Department headquarters. Developers have taken several steps to ease concern about the store's effect on Route 7 traffic.

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Plans call for 27 customer parking spaces, more than double the number required by zoning, according to documents on file with town planners.

Another measure calls for an off-duty police officer to direct vehicles to and from the site "as long as necessary for traffic safety."

During the peak traffic hour on Route 7, from 4:30 to 5:30 p.m., project officials expect Liberty Market to add 23 car trips, a traffic flow increase on the highway of less than 2.5 percent.

Developers say an indoor waiting area should reduce the likelihood of lines outside. They said they will work with local police and town officials to address any traffic problems that arise.

Dick Lindsay can be reached at rlindsay@berkshireeagle.com.


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