Binghamton Residents Concerned About Drive-Thru Cannabis Shop
Some people who live near a proposed Binghamton cannabis store are raising questions about the planned business that would feature a pick-up window.
The city planning commission is considering a special use permit for the shop planned at 439 Court Street. The building at the site has been vacant since an A&W restaurant closed in February 2018.
AOW Construction of Albany is seeking permission to make renovations to prepare the place for a future cannabis retail outlet. It's not known who would be granted a state license to operate the store on the city's East Side.
Peter Stewart, principal of Horace Mann Elementary School on Binghamton's West Side, told members of the planning commission he "was not happy at all" when he learned of the proposed cannabis business.
Stewart, who lives on the East Side, told WNBF News he is "really upset" by the effort to open the store at the site.
Stewart said there already are three operating cannabis stores in Broome County. He said a drive-thru cannabis shop "is not right for the east side of Binghamton." He noted the shop would be located within sight of Calvin Coolidge Elementary School.
Donald Hodgson, whose home is next door to where the shop would be located, expressed concerns about security if this business is allowed to open.
Susan Papastrat, who lives near the site, told the commission: "Putting that cannabis store there is the worst decision you could possibly make." She seemed incredulous that the place would include a drive-thru window. She said "we don't need that."
The commission delayed action on the proposed shop until some additional information was provided about how it would operate. A vote on the plan is expected at the commission's December 5 meeting.
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