Guaranteed Investments Inc. hope to open a cannabis cultivation site at 7401 S. State St. in Grand Crossing. Credit: Google Maps

GREATER GRAND CROSSING — The owners of a cannabis cultivation site proposed for a long-vacant building near the Dan Ryan Expressway are awaiting a state license before they can move forward, the local alderman said.

Ayman Haswah and Ahmad “Eddie” Shaban, owners of two South Side beverage and liquor stores, hosted a community meeting alongside Ald. Roderick Sawyer (6th) in September 2021 to tell neighbors about the cannabis cultivator

Under the business name Guaranteed Investments, the duo would repurpose a vacant building at 7401 S. State St. and grow about 6,000 pounds of cannabis every three months at the site. Renovations of the buildings would cost about $10 million, a company representative said at the time. 

After securing partnerships with retailers, employees would create cannabis-infused products, such as hard candies and drinks, and sell the items to dispensaries in the city, representatives said at the time. 

More than a year later, the cannabis business is awaiting a Craft Grower License that would allow Haswah and Shaban to cultivate and package their products, Sawyer said. The Illinois Department of Agriculture approves applications for the license using guidelines and requirements in the Cannabis Regulation and Tax Act. 

If Haswah and Shaban receive the license, the cannabis cultivation site would be the first of its kind in the area. 

Some neighbors supported the business last year, saying it would bring a vacant structure “back to life.” If the duo is approved for the license, Sawyer said he would host more community meetings for neighbors to weigh in.

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Atavia Reed is a reporter for Block Club Chicago, covering the Englewood, Auburn Gresham and Chatham neighborhoods. Twitter @ataviawrotethis