Posted on

Hamden cannabis rules could bring back High Bazaar, other events

Hamden cannabis rules could bring back High Bazaar, other events

HAMDEN — A cannabis business incubator could be in Hamden’s future, as could temporary cannabis events like the High Bazaar.

Both would be allowed, with restrictions, under a proposed set of zoning regulations that also permit cannabis entrepreneurs to set up shop in certain parts of town.

The Planning & Zoning Commission is scheduled to discuss the proposal Tuesday, when it can decide whether to request changes or move forward and schedule a public hearing, said Town Planner Eugene Livshits.

Though the draft specifically addresses retail establishments, a corresponding zoning chart applicable to other license types such as cultivation and manufacturing also will go before the commission, said Director of Economic Development Erik Johnson.

Depending on the type of license, cannabis establishments would be allowed in certain transect zones or in manufacturing zones, the chart shows. Those wishing to open such establishments would need to submit a special permit or a site plan application, per the chart.

In addition to limiting precisely where cannabis retail establishments could be located — at least 500 feet away from a school and no closer than 250 feet from each other — the proposed regulations outline two rather unusual provisions.

The first would create an exception to the rule regulating the proximity of cannabis establishments and allows one “accelerator establishment,” with up to four cannabis businesses, to open in town.

Concerns about social equity inspired the provision, said Johnson, who guided a cannabis task force in drafting regulations. It is the same idea behind any business incubator, Johnson said: that allowing fledgling businesses to co-locate and share resources makes them “more likely to be successful.”

The goal is to support efforts to grow cannabis business opportunities in Disproportionately Impacted Areas, or DIAs, Johnson said.