DANVILLE, Ill. (WCIA) — The Lynch Road area of Danville will not be getting a third marijuana dispensary, the Danville City Council decided on Tuesday.
One of the items on the council’s agenda was whether to amend a zoning ordinance that allowed for two dispensaries near Lynch Road. One dispensary – Sunnyside – is already open and a second – Seven Point – will break ground in March or April with construction being completed before the end of the year.
A third company – Parkway Dispensary LLC – was looking to have the city’s ordinance amended so they could open a third dispensary on Danville’s far east side. Although they received a Special Use Permit from the city’s Area Planning and Zoning Commission earlier this month, the city council voted the opposite way.
In a 7-6 vote, the council denied Parkway the ability to open for business in the city.
Vanessa Dotson, a co-owner of Seven Point, spoke out against the amendment on Tuesday, citing supply and demand as one reason.
“There is a limited number of customers to serve, and two dispensaries will be enough to handle that amount of business,” Dotson said. “Between the two, we are able to serve the needs of all of the area’s customers.”
Dotson also pointed to the economic impacts a third dispensary in the area would have. Another dispensary would oversaturate the area, she claimed.
“Prudent city planning means avoiding oversaturating at any specific area with cannabis businesses. If that area gets oversaturated with dispensaries, we will all suffer and little if any additional revenue will be generated for the city.” Dotson said. “If Danville wants additional dispensaries, it should amend its ordinance to allow for more dispensaries in the Danville area outside of the casino corridor.”
The ordinance currently dictates that dispensaries have to be located away from residential areas of the city.
Ambrose Jackson, CEO of Parkway Dispensary, disputed the oversaturation argument Dotson presented.
“I think that the argument that more dispensaries is a detriment to consumers and the community is baseless,” Jackson said. “I think time and time again in many industries, we’ve seen that more competition results in better quality and lower prices and it benefits customers. That is our goal – to be able to provide another option.”
But it was Dotson’s argument that swayed Alderman Michael Puhr, who echoed many of her concerns during discussion.
“I just can’t see this community supporting three,” Puhr said. “I don’t know how we can do it. I think we’re just going to oversaturate that whole area and we’re not going to see any additional revenue coming in.”
Puhr was one of the seven council members who voted no, leaving the Lynch Road area with two dispensaries.