Issue:  Vol. 48 / No. 8 / 22 February 2018

Apothecarium moves forward with SF Castro, Marina pot dispensaries

An artist rendering shows the proposed interior for the Apothecarium's new Marina location.

An artist rendering shows the proposed interior for the Apothecarium’s new Marina location.

The Apothecarium is moving forward with its plans to open new medical marijuana dispensaries in San Francisco’s gay Castro district and Marina neighborhood later this year.

Despite vehement opposition to its proposed Lombard Street location from the Cow Hollow Association, the Apothecarium prevailed Wednesday night in beating back an appeal of its permit for the Marina location by the neighborhood group. The city’s Board of Appeals deadlocked 2-2 on the matter, meaning the permit appeal was denied.

The Apothecarium, which opened its first location near the intersection of Market and Church streets five years ago, won approval from the city’s planning commission last fall to open at 2414 Lombard Street. According to the dispensary, 2,650 of its patients live in the Marina area.

It expects to begin construction on the space within the next 60 to 90 days, depending on how fast city officials sign off on the needed permits, and is planning to open by the end of this year.

“It was a long, arduous process with formidable opposition, but we made some great friends in the neighborhood along the way,” stated Apothecarium co-owner Ryan Hudson. “We’re looking forward to opening in the Marina and serving the 2,700 patients that we already have in the northern part of town. We’d like to thank all of our friends, customers and supporters who turned out to tell their personal stories in support of our application.”

Construction is already underway at the Apothecarium’s new location on upper Market Street. In April it won approval from the planning commission to move into the shuttered Shanghai Restaurant space at 2029 Market Street.

Unlike with its Marina site, the Apothecarium’s relocation of its Castro location had broad community support, including from the residents who live in the condos in the new building. At 5,207 square feet it is five times the size of its current location, at 2095 Market Street, allowing more room not only for the staff but also to ensure customers no longer will have to wait outside during peak times.

The plans call for 2,858 square feet accessible to patrons. Architect Vincent Gonzaga worked with local interior design firm Urban Chalet to maintain the Apothecarium’s current neo-Victorian look but with a contemporary twist for the new space.

As the Bay Area Reporter noted in March, an investment group bought the space for an undisclosed amount at the end of 2015. (One online listing had it for sale at a cost of nearly $4.2 million.) It then signed a 10-year lease with the Apothecarium, which includes multiple long-term options to extend it.

The dispensary hopes to open there later this summer.

— Matthew S. Bajko, June 24, 2016 @ 12:45 pm PST
Filed under: Uncategorized

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