Update: Village Board Approves Zoning for Cannabis Businesses

Update: Village Board Approves Zoning for Cannabis Businesses

Northbrook has joined the list of Illinois communities that will allow the legal sale of recreational cannabis products, once the state’s new cannabis laws go into effect on January 1. The Village Board unanimously approved a Zoning Code amendment recommended by the Plan Commission that authorized special permits for cannabis businesses in the C-2 through C-5 Districts. The Board amended the resolution by expanding possible hours of operation to 7:00 a.m. – 10:00 p.m. and reducing the required distance from schools and daycare facilities from 500 to 250 feet. An additional amendment specified that such businesses could not be located in the Village Green Overlay District, which roughly corresponds to the downtown area.

The Plan Commission and Board of Trustees heard extensive public comments from residents and non-residents both in favor and opposed to cannabis sales in the Village. Although the majority of speakers advocated against allowing cannabis businesses, officials noted that banning such businesses would not keep marijuana-related problems out of the Village. While some neighboring communities such as Glenview and Highland Park have chosen to prohibit dispensaries, other nearby communities have approved dispensaries. Deerfield decided to postpone allowing dispensaries until the summer of 2020 in order to reevaluate the situation after the first round of dispensaries are permitted.

Following approval of the zoning standards, the Plan Commission continued its consideration of the Greenhouse dispensary business proposed for the northeast corner of Skokie Boulevard and Dundee Road. The proposal met with unanimous support from the Commission, which directed Village staff to draft a resolution recommending approval of a special permit with the condition of an administrative review after 12 months. The Greenhouse proposal is expected to be on the Board of Trustees’ agenda in December.