STATEN ISLAND, N.Y.– A buzz of activity inside Staten Island’s first medical marijuana dispensary drew curiosity from pedestrians Tuesday morning as they passed by the new storefront on New Dorp Lane.
Retail chain Be. — formerly known as CITIVA — will open its doors to the public at 10 a.m. Wednesday, with a ribbon-cutting event planned for March 26.
When asked about the new addition to the historic commercial corridor, a man in his 20s said he doesn’t expect it to impact his life in any way, while a 59-year-old woman and lifelong New Dorp resident said she fears the “element” it might attract.
Borough residents prescribed medical cannabis currently have to travel outside of Staten Island or sign up with a third-party delivery service to purchase items.
“They have to pay a toll, they have to drive sometimes a half-hour, or an hour each way,” said Dave Palmieri, vice president of programs for iAnthus Holdings Co. “Opening this new store, it’s a big advantage for Staten Island residents.”
The company also will offer delivery services in the borough.
Currently, there are more than 2,600 Staten Islanders prescribed medical cannabis. Qualifying conditions include — but are not limited to — PTSD, cancer, diabetes, arthritis and opioid addiction withdrawal.
A CONSUMER’S GUIDE
Inside the dispensary is an open, sleek design resembling that of an Apple store. The retail space — which formerly housed a dress shop — includes multiple display cases, a sitting area in front of a wall-length window looking out onto New Dorp Lane, and a checkout area.
The product lines — some of which contain THC, some CBD and some a mix of both — include vape pens, tinctures, capsules, bath bombs and face creams. Palmieri estimated that a person who medicates regularly typically will spend