A second cannabis retail shop has received approval from the Boston Cannabis Board (BCB) to operate on Cambridge Street in the Sullivan Square area, with Resilient Remedies (R2) getting a unanimous vote from the Board on June 16.
The matter was approved unanimously by the Board after having been deferred in April due to lack of a complete traffic study. However, the approval comes with a caveat due to the fact that R2 will have to clear a buffer zone conflict. That’s because Heritage Club got their approval first, and a second operator cannot be located within a half-mile of the other. Both Heritage and R2 will now move their applications to the Zoning Board of Appeals (ZBA) – where Heritage will make their case for opening and R2 will make their case for opening and doing so within the half-mile buffer zone.
Most Board members on June 16 had good thing to say about the R2 application, which is a store described as more of a boutique outlet with only two points of sale and relying mostly on foot traffic and public transit riders.
“I think it was a strong application and I’m satisfied with the traffic study,” said Chair Kathleen Joyce. “Their testimony was they would run a mom and pop establishment as opposed to the one we passed in April (Heritage). I have no issues.”
Said Member Lisa Holmes, “The traffic study cleared up the issues I was thinking of. I still think it’s very ambitious to think people are not going to drive and to rely on foot traffic. Other than that, I don’t have a problem.”
R2 President Jack Kelly, of Charlestown, said he was grateful to the community and ready to move ahead to the ZBA.
“I’m beyond grateful and happy, and excited to move forward,” he said. “First and foremost – I would like to thank Councilor Lydia Edwards, Charlestown Coalition, State Rep. Dan Ryan, and Abraham Lincoln Post 11. But more importantly, from my heart and soul, thank you to the people of Charlestown. Some I’ve known my whole life, while others I may have just met. Regardless, the everyday people in this community were the reason for today’s approval. I’m so proud to live and to have grown up in Charlestown. Thank you. I bleed Green. #TownieForever.”
Councilor Edwards said she was happy to see the local applicant get approvals, which is a standard policy for her in supporting local applicants.
“I’m happy to see a local candidate get through the process,” she said. “We have a couple more steps and I’ll be with him in supporting him through that process too as I do with all local candidates.”
Though no one from Charlestown has progressed to the ZBA stage yet for a cannabis license, in other neighborhoods it has proven to not be a rubber stamp process. The ZBA has denied a few applications that have made it through the BCB, and there is very little precedent about what the ZBA might do with a buffer zone conflict in a neighborhood outside of the downtown area.