Downtown pot shop opens doors despite community backlash
Today is the grand opening of Tucson's first downtown pot shop.Photo: Video by kgun9.com
TUCSON (KGUN9-TV) - Today is the grand opening of Tucson's first downtown pot shop.
Some neighbors are already upset with The Downtown Dispensary opening near the 4th Avenue District, saying it breaks city law and doesn't belong in their backyard.
City law says pot shops need to stay a thousand feet from a church, but The Downtown Dispensary on the corner of Sixth Street and Sixth Ave. is only half that distance from the First Baptist Church.
"I just think the city should review their process and really do an in-depth study about areas that will be impacted -- churches, schools, etc.," said Chris Gans, the West University Neighborhood Association president.
The church was vacant with a for sale sign outside, city officials said, so the ordinance did not apply when they approved the pot shop's license.
A new ministry has since moved in and won't comment on its new neighbor.
The pot shop's owner Mohit Asnani tells 9 On Your Side he is used to controversy, but he is confident his business won't shut down before it gets off the ground.
"With any business you're always going to have some pushback," Asnani said. "This business does attract a bit more controversy than others. But at the end of the day, we've gone through the steps, we're very highly regulated, and we're going to maintain our license."
The first patients will step through the Downtown Dispensary's doors at 10 a.m. Tuesday morning.
Regular business hours are 10 a.m - 7 p.m.