Vikram Sachdeva, applicant for a retail cannabis store at 8050 Lickman Road, speaks at the public hearing on Aug. 20 at city hall. (Jennifer Feinberg/ The Progress file)

Lickman Road cannabis store rezoning goes through after distance issue resolved

Chilliwack Council had paused the rezoning process to clarify wording around 300-metre requirement

Council moved ahead with a couple of cannabis retail proposals at the Tuesday council meeting after putting the brakes on one of them mid-process.

The cannabis retail store rezoning for 8050 Lickman Road was approved unanimously by council after it updated portions of the C9 regulations.

It was during the original Aug. 20 rezoning hearing for the proposed Seed & Stone store on Lickman that questions arose about how the 300-metre distance would be measured in various scenarios.

READ MORE: Distance questions put process on hold

Council decided to get clarification and update the rules before moving forward on any further C9 applications for pot stores.

At issue was the specific distance from the Lickman location to the other cannabis retail location rezoned, just down the road on the SureStay Hotel by Best Western property on Industrial Way.

READ MORE: First rezoning approved under C9

The Industrial Way location was approved in April.

That uncertainty over the 300-metre buffer from another cannabis outlet, put the process on hold for a little longer than expected.

Proponent Vikram Sachdeva was overcome with emotion and relief this week for a few moments after council voted in favour of third reading of the rezoning to C9, from Tourist Commercial C2.

The local business owner said he didn’t know what to expect when he arrived in council chambers.

READ MORE: Council rejected two, approved one

“I came with an empty slate today and i was just hoping they would make the right decision,” Sachdeva said.

“I think I did everything in my power to put forward an application that met all the requirements.”

Sachdeva included the 250 signatures of support in the application package, explaining he’d done his due diligence and homework. Their application met all the zoning criteria, he noted, with no variances required, which council has already shown it has no appetite for, and they have been leasing the empty commercial space in anticipation of approval.

Next step is waiting on the issuing of a provincial licence to open the store.

“I guarantee I will set an example of how these things should be done,” Sachdeva said after the vote.

The other proposal saw council give first and second reading of the rezoning proposal for 45460 Luckakuck Way from C4 (Shopping Centre) Zone to a C9 (Cannabis Retail) Zone. A public hearing is called for Oct. 15.


@CHWKjourno
jfeinberg@theprogress.com

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