City leaders in Flint, Mich., have an idea for a former police training academy that is making national news: They want to allow the building to be used as a place to grow legal cannabis.
The catch: Finalizing a $500,000 real estate deal for the property.
The deal is with Evergrow LLC. While the Flint City Council has not yet to approve the deal, the city’s Department of Planning and Development is working on finalizing the purchase that will allow the company to grow legal cannabis in a place where police officers once did training.
“It’s kind of ironic that the training facility for the police department, that used to go against marijuana, is going to possibly become a marijuana grow shop,” Flint Councilman Santino Guerra told MLive.
Policeman, Volunteers Once Trained There
The City of Flint once operated a police academy at the building. It also served as a training home for the police department’s Blue Badge Volunteer program. But the city stopped using the site in 2010.
Since then, the building has remained empty. In the meantime, voters in Michigan approved legal adult recreational cannabis in 2018 and legal sales began in the state in late 2019.
Money certainly talked in this situation. The city advertised the entire 4.4-acre lot for sale and only received two offers. The first is the $500,000 offer from Evergrow. The second was just $20,000 from an unidentified party.
Evergrow wants to close quickly on the deal so it can start construction for a grow facility on the site. The company also needs to get the proper zoning and permits to operate a grow facility on the property, which is in an area north of downtown.
Councilman Eric Mays told MLive the city is willing to move as quickly as possible. “I don’t want to blow a deal,” he said.
Michigan Marijuana Sales Soar
The interesting real estate deal in Flint comes as Michigan marijuana sales continue to increase. Even though cannabis sales didn’t start until just a few months before the pandemic of 2020, a year in which so much shut down, the state still has seen a high amount of sales in 2021.
For example, sales in March 2021 – about $115 million in total – were twice that of March 2020. The state already has 260 recreational cannabis stores and 410 medical marijuana dispensaries, according to Detroit Metro Times. But to keep up with demand, state leaders have decided to grant permits in 2021 for 45 more recreational marijuana dispensaries and 46 more medical marijuana dispensaries.
Also, Detroit, the largest city in Michigan, is expected to open recreational dispensaries and cannabis consumption lounges within the next few months.