Forest Grove may ban medical marijuana shops downtown, space would remain through major corridor

Forest Grove may ban medical marijuana shops downtown, space would remain through major corridor


Medical marijuana restrictions in Forest Grove will stick relatively close to rules set by the state should the City Council approve development code amendments the Forest Grove Planning Commission OK’d on Monday, March 23.

As they stand, the state rules require that medical marijuana facilities:

  • Must be located in commercial, industrial or mixed use zones or on agricultural land.
  • Cannot share a location with a grow site.
  • Must be outside 1,000 feet from the property lines of schools attended primarily by minors. (This does not include Pacific University.)
  • Must not be within 1,000 feet of another medical marijuana facility’s property lines.

The rules approved by the Planning Commission would supplement these regulations by classifying medical marijuana facilities as medical centers. Because medical centers aren’t allowed in industrial or neighborhood commercial zones, medical marijuana facilities would bear the same zoning restrictions.

The Planning Commission also opted to include a ban on medical marijuana facilities in the town center. Currently, the whole town center is enclosed within school buffers, rendering it out of bounds for medical marijuana facilities. But the Planning Commission hopes to expand the town center’s borders soon, which would place 2.5 of its blocks outside the school buffer, just north of 19th Avenue between Cedar and Elm streets.

Together, these amendments would allow medical marijuana facilities primarily in the community commercial zones along the 19th Avenue/Pacific Avenue corridor east of downtown.

This decision by the Planning Commission follows the City of Cornelius’ recent adoption of rules that add 1,000-foot buffers to state-licensed daycare centers, limiting potential medical marijuana facilities to about 16 properties in town.

Holan said the City Council will consider the amendments in its April 13 and April 27 meetings. A final decision needs to be made before a yearlong ban on medical marijuana facilities ends May 1.

Marked in bright green is the area outside the school buffer zone to which the Planning Commission hopes to expand the town center.

–Dillon Pilorget

dpilorget@oregonian.com

503-294-5927

@ForestGReporter


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