Road Trip! A 29-Acre “Cannabis Super Center” is Being Built
California’s first “Cannabis Super Center” will potentially be opening in a city I personally blast by on my way to Vegas from LA, Barstow.
Just before Christmas, Barstow city council voted to approve a 29-acre green zone space which will house cannabis manufacturers, pot farms, distributors, retail dispensaries, cannabis “consumption lounge”, and even plan on having pot-themed events.
This massive mega-mall made for pot is taking over Barstow’s Outlet Mall which has been closed for years. Move over discounted retail and make way for what is being marketed as “the most unique green zone property in the entire country!” The space will be ranked one of the largest cannabis facilities in the US with 330,000 square feet of its 29 acres of space designated for cultivation.
What’s surprising is that Barstow only just offered their first-ever pot shop permits in 2022. Now, they will be the home of what’s being called the “Cannabis Super Center” and over two dozen businesses are involved in the project. Jeebus, that escalated quickly.
Maybe to be expected, there’s been a bit of controversy surrounding the project. Previous pitches to city counsel by the developers behind the project have not gone well and it’s been called a “legally-questionable” project in new sources.
Residents are also not too keen on the idea. One resident, Minister Joe Vail of the Mojave Desert Christian Church, said that this situation is similar to when “Barstow was known as the meth capital of the world.” This might feel like a stretch to some but it’s a real concern of his.
According to SF Gate, during the December 21st city council meeting Vail said, “I would love to see a sign across Barstow Main Street up here that says Barstow belongs to Jesus. I’m afraid if you put up something like this you’ll be saying Barstow belongs to Satan. I’m not in favor of this at all.”
What’s ahead for this “Cannabis Super Center”?
Despite the controversy, the developers have been moving full steam ahead with confidence. They signed a 10-year lease with the option to extend the lease for another 10 after that. Even before the latest approval by city officials, the project has significant strides readying the space for businesses having done months of construction already.
Clearly Barstow has some growing pains when it comes to welcoming the cannabis industry. At one point, over a million dollars was seized by the sheriff’s office from legal pot growers. Later, the sheriff’s department returned the money, admitting that they were wrong to have taken it in the first place.
As far as this project is concerned, the city will see potentially millions of dollars in additional revenue when it finally opens. As it stands now, $420,000 in nonrefundable application fees have already been paid to the city. Personally, I’m looking forward to seeing this place land on Roadsideamerica.com. Until then, following the wild twists and turns behind this pothead’s dream destination will be pretty entertained.