A proposed medical marijuana dispensary in downtown Scottsdale will go before the city Planning Commission this week and is scheduled to reach City Council Dec. 4.
The proposed project, from prominent downtown property owners Shawn and Steven Yari, would replace aging single-story buildings in the city’s Entertainment District with a two-story building featuring a dispensary on the first floor and boutique office space on the second.
The Yaris are asking the city to essentially spot zone their property at Shoeman Lane and Wells Fargo Avenue for the dispensary.
According to an application with the city, the property owners are asking Council to rezone the property and approve a conditional use permit for the dispensary.
They are also asking for a citywide text amendment that would reduce separation requirements for dispensaries downtown.
The existing city ordinance requires a dispensary to be 1,500 feet from schools, parks, churches, daycares and homes. The application asks that separation be cut to 650 feet for downtown dispensaries only.
Without that amendment in place, the dispensary concept is dead on arrival.
The proposed dispensary is about 1,300 feet away from Perform to Learn Preschool.
That preschool was a point of controversy in another proposed dispensary project that failed to move past Council in 2019.
That project, located a quarter-mile away from the new project near 5th Avenue and Scottsdale Road, was opposed by property owners who argued it was too close to the preschool and a nearby Christian Science Reading room.
This time around, the project is unlikely to face the same challenges from local property owners because the Yaris already own much of the neighboring properties in the Entertainment District.
If the Yari’s date with the Council is delayed it could face additional scrutiny from