[UPDATE] 3rd Site Proposed For Medical Marijuana Dispensary

The Planning & Zoning Commission meets April 5 to continue its public hearing on medical marijuana dispensaries.

Three proposals are on the agenda.

One involves the former Bertucci’s restaurant on the Post Road, near the Sherwood Island Connector.

The 2nd is for the old Blockbuster store.

The 3rd proposal is for 345 Post Road West.

That’s the Academy of Dance building, near the Norwalk border.

The Academy of Dance, on Post Road West.

The dance studio sent out this message:

It has been brought to our attention that our landlords have filed an “Application for Special Permit” to attempt to make this location eligible for a CT Medical Marijuana Dispensary. We were not aware of these intentions and we are working with our landlords to better understand their recent actions.

It is important for our dance community to know that we are bound by a current lease that entitles us to remain at 345 Post Road West as we have done successfully for many years.

The Academy says their “classes, performances, privacy and typical routines” will not be disrupted or infringed upon. They’re not closing, and they don’t intend to move.

Sounds as if the applicant — “FFD Westport LLC” — has found a location smaller than the 2 big locations so many residents complained about at the last meeting.

But it’s clear the current tenants are not going to just waltz away.

(The P&Z meeting on Thursday, April 5 begins at 7 p.m. in Town Hall.)

21 responses to “[UPDATE] 3rd Site Proposed For Medical Marijuana Dispensary

  1. students will be able to jump even higher! 🙁


  2. Discussion of application for a dispensary at 1505 Post Road East (DXL store) WILL continue on April 5th. Here is a link to the notice of continuance… http://www.westportct.gov/index.aspx?recordid=15365&page=745

  3. Thomas Bloch

    Looks like Westport has become ground zero for Marijuana Dispensaries. Why Westport, because the P&Z approved siting in Town for these types of business’s.

  4. Arline Gertzoff

    I am totally in favor of a small dispensery for CT residentswho can benefit from medical marijuana.The properties
    being proposed seem rather large for the intended purpose.Will the facility be only for CT residents or can anyone with a prescription from any state get their prescription filled?CThas rather strict policies but other states may not .We certainly do not need more than one facility.The public needs more information to make an enlightened decesion

    • Valerie Port

      You must have a CT MMJ card and upon registering for the card (after minimum of 2 dr appointments and a lot of paperwork with the Department of Consumer Protection) you register to use 1 dispensary in CT. You cannot go to any other dispensary unless you apply for a change, which you are only allowed to do once a year. The pricing is unregulated, having more than 1 in town will make the pricing competitive, remember this is not covered by insurance. Also, most people do not pay in cash, they use their debit card. So for all of those who are concerned about a robbery, after the high security and cameras to get into a dispensary, a robber is better off robbing a bank. Let’s face it, Westport voted on allowing up to 2 dispensaries years ago, no one came out and protested then, it is coming, so pick your poison…on the Post Road in a vacant building or youth dance studio. I personally wish you all would protest all of the gun stores popping up in Norwalk recently. One right near the high school. Guns kill, medical marijuana is medicine for sick people.

  5. Phil Hein says: Dan, I’m sorry to correct you, but the “Bertucci’s” dispensary is smaller than the Dance Academy building. Shoreline Alternative Care is planned to be 2,700 square feet on the second floor of 833 Post Road East (about a quarter of the overall space). The Dance Academy building is approximately 3,700 square feet. I know this because 345 Post Rd West was presented to me as well. WE ARE NOT LEASING THE ENTIRE BUILDING AT 833 POST ROAD EAST (the “Bertucci’s bldg”).

    The size of my dispensary was mentioned at the last PNZ meeting a few times. Just trying to keep everyone aware of accurate numbers. I’m sure you can appreciate that. Thanks very much.

  6. Barbara Stephen

    Boy oh boy SO PRETENIOUS

    Sent from my iPhone


  7. For them that wants to see how truly silly our town is being about these dispensaries, just grab a CD of THE MUSIC MAN.

  8. Jeff Giannone

    What’s with all this outrage? Maybe people should pay more attention. Medical Marajuana has been on the Westport Zoning agenda since 2013 and has already been debated both locally and nationally ad nauseam not to mention already approved by Westport zoning. At this point wouldn’t it just invite legal battles to not follow existing zoning regs? Personally I don’t see why this should be treated any differently than drug stores or liquor stores.

  9. David J. Loffredo

    This isn’t really about medical marijuana though, that’s why there’s so much pushback. Recreational marijuana is now legal in 9 states and D.C., and headed to the other 41. Connecticut is desperate for revenues and has just about run out of ways to tax us – so Pot and Tolls can’t be too far behind.

    And if you look at places where marijuana shifted from Medicinal to Recreational (e.g. name your favorite Colorado town) once the law passed, it was the Medicinal Dispensaries that had first mover advantage and all pivoted to the broader audience. That’s what will happen here, and that’s why I think it’s ok to be vigilant and kick this can as far down the road as possible.

    • Jeff Giannone

      Well, if recreational becomes legal I am not sure any amount of zoning will have an impact. Then it would be considered “spot zoning “ and open a whole new can of worms to kick. Honestly, I. Don’t see why this should be treated any differently than liquor stores.

  10. Jo Ann Miller

    In Breckenridge, CO, the residents were fine having a medical marijuana dispensary downtown. It was not until they legalized it as a recreational drug, did the uproar howl through the night. Eventually they moved this one “head shop” out by the airport along with others. While I support Phil Hein in anything he does, I would think to lower the whining, the 3rd new option might be the best. People seem to forget that many patients rely on this medically approved drug tor their better health. Such crass response is unsettling, considering weed has been around for 60 years or so.

    • Jeff Giannone

      2727 B.C. First recorded use of cannabis as medicine in Chinese pharmacopoeia. In every part of the world humankind has used cannabis for a wide variety of health problems.

    • Medical cannabis definitely deserves further study. And the people already experiencing health benefits from these compounds deserve to have access.

      In terms of 345 Post Road, let’s not forget that The Academy of Dance has been at that location for 10 years – perhaps more. A children’s dance school that has been an institution in Westport for over 40 years. Aren’t there any other private locations that qualify?

  11. I posted this yesterday in response to another 06880 comment about medical marijuana. I’m repeating it for the benefit of tho who may not have seen it.

    Maybe some of you remember about 35 years ago, when a brash loud-mouthed man named Arnie Kaye wanted to build a video game facility. The town erupted into hysteria — it would bring crime into Westport; it would bring drugs; all sorts of terrible things would happen if he built it. And what happened? Arnie’s Place was run as cleanly as could be. There were even smoke detectors in the bathrooms to prevent kids from smoking pot (or anything else). Arnie even had a deli and an ice cream parlor with delicious food and Belgian chocolates. They were spotless. I remember being there one evening at about 11:00 and Arnie himself was polishing the chrome on the ice cream stools. He wasn’t exactly a model citizen, but none of the terrible things forecast ever happened.

    Maybe some of you remember a few years later when a group of parents suggested building a playground at Compo Beach. OMG!!! It will ruin the view! The wood will have arsenic in it! And worst of all –they’re going to bring busloads of kids in from BRIDGEPORT!!! Today, the playground is one of the highlights of Compo. And it delights many children and their parents.

    I think it would be helpful if those panicking against the medical marijuana facilities stepped back and studied the situation more carefully. So many things that seem frightening at first turn out to be perfectly harmless when actually created.

  12. Mark Demmerle

    Why isn’t medical marijuana dispensed at a pharmacy. Is it because of Federal regulations? Insurance? Why does it have to be sold in a different space from where everyone goes to buy every other kind of medication?

  13. Mary Ruggiero

    Good question, Mark, and probably the right answer.

  14. Yes – it is still a Schedule I drug, according to official federal policy.