ANDERSONVILLE — Dispensary33 wants to take over one-and-a-half storefronts in its North Clark Street building, an expansion that would allow the store to serve more customers and cut down on outdoor wait times, owners announced Tuesday.
The popular Andersonville cannabis dispensary at 5001 N. Clark St. is asking the city for a zoning change to expand into a neighboring storefront and take a portion of the space previously occupied by Hot G Dog. Plans for the expansion were detailed at a meeting held Tuesday by Ald. Matt Martin (47th).
Under the plans, Dispensary33 would take over the space at 5005 N. Clark St. occupied by Jenny’s Nail Salon and a back portion of the former hot dog joint at 5009 N. Clark St. Jenny’s is planning a move to elsewhere in the neighborhood, officials said at the meeting.
The move would give Dispensary33 more than 3,400 square feet, a 63 percent increase of its current footprint, said co-owner Zachary Zises.
Expanding would allow Dispensary33 to increase the size of its sales floor, increase its reception area and build a seating area for people waiting for their orders. It would mean fewer people would have to wait outside the dispensary’s door and customers and employees would have more space for social distancing, Zises said.
Dispensary33’s expansion push comes as the Illinois cannabis industry continues to boom.
The state set a new record for pot sales in June, and other dispensaries, including Midway Dispensary, are planning aggressive expansions. Dispensary33 is also trying to open a second location in the West Loop.
Now, the dispensary is also trying to take a portion of the Hot G Dog space after the restaurant closed in June due to financial hardships brought on by the coronavirus pandemic. Dispensary33 will only take a back portion of the storefront, and the rest can still operate as a restaurant or retail space, Zises said.
No one at Tuesday’s meeting spoke in opposition to Dispensary33’s plans.
Some concerns have been raised about the expansion’s impact on parking for nearby residents. Neighbors have raised the possibility of petitioning for permit parking on nearby Argyle Street, and metered parking coming to that stretch of Clark Street will help turn over parking spaces, staffers with the 47th Ward office said at the meeting.
Mike Sullivan, owner of SoFo Tap and Meeting House Tavern, said Dispensary33 has been a good neighbor and he is in support of its expansion.
“All the folks at Dispensary33 … have been very responsive, very engaged” in the community, Sullivan said. “They’ve been great folks to have around.”
Martin has yet to weigh in on Dispensary33’s expansion plans. The plan needs the alderman’s blessing before it receives approval from the City Council.
Those wishing to weigh in on the matter can message Martin’s office by filling out a submission form online.
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