Port Moody pot shop bids go to public hearings, again

Proponents get a second chance after council reverses previous decision.

An applicant for a new pot shop in Port Moody that was previously rejected by city council gets another chance on Tuesday.

That’s when Cannoe’s pitch for zoning bylaw amendments to allow it to operate a cannabis retail outlet at 3034 St. Johns St. gets a second public hearing. The company had previously made its case last June, but was left on the outside looking in when council decided to approve a rival bid by the owner of the St. James Well pub, Rylie Ableman.

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At the time, councillors said they favoured Ableman’s ties in the community over the corporate background of Cannoe, that includes the founders of the Roots clothing company and Aldo shoes. 

They also said Ableman’s proposed location for his Happy Hippie shop in the city’s historic commercial district on Clarke Street prevents turning St. Johns Street into a kind of “cannabis row,” with another shop already located along the busy thoroughfare.

But in September, council walked back its decision and decided to hold a new round of public hearings for both applicants. Mayor Rob Vagramov said new information had been received and concerns had been raised about council’s simultaneous consideration of both applications.

After Cannoe makes its case at Tuesday’s public hearing, its application will be immediately considered at a special meeting of council.

Meanwhile, Ableman will get a second chance to pitch his shop on Oct. 27.

Two other cannabis shops are already open in the city. Kiaro was the first to open last March and Burb opened its shop in Suter Brook Village in July.

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