Port Huron marijuana provisioning center project moves forward


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A marijuana provisioning center has been proposed for 1110 Military St. in downtown Port Huron. (Photo: Brian Wells/Times Herald)

A marijuana provisioning center is one step closer to becoming a reality in Port Huron.

The Port Huron Historic District Commission unanimously signed off on Steven Schafer’s plans to demolish the yellow building at 1110 Military St. and rebuild a larger building in-line with surrounding buildings and historical configuration Tuesday. 

Schafer, of Schafer Development and Compassionate Advisors, said he had hoped to get clearance to bring something “nice and new to the community.” 

“It’s really a charming downtown,” he said. 

Schafer’s proposed building plans include parking spaces behind the building, a main-level floorplan featuring a reception area, display area and flower bar, office space, and an employee break and work area. The lower level features an intake area and storage or possible apartment space. 

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Steven Schafer of Schafer Development and Compassionate Advisors explains his plans for a marijuana provisioning center at 1110 Military St. in Port Huron to the city’s historic district commission on Nov. 3, 2020. (Photo: Bryce Airgood/Times Herald)

Schafer said his organization operates facilities on 185 acres in Pinconning in Bay County and hope to open a Pincanna provisioning center in Port Huron. 

Under the city’s updated zoning ordinance passed in October, provisioning centers and retail establishments are similarly defined as establishments that can obtain marijuana from marijuana providers and sell it to people over 21.

Under the ballot proposal passed by voters on Tuesday, Schafer’s planned provisioning center would also be allowed, Port Huron Planning Director David Haynes said.

The company will need to go through the city application process and go through the proper state channels, but two marijuana locations are allowed in downtown through city marijuana ordinances, he said.

“There is the option,” Haynes said, but whether or not Schafer’s business will be selected by the city to operate as a marijuana business is another matter. 

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In Schafer’s developer application, he said the current building “has no historical significance any longer,” “historical elements have been removed” and he plans on doing a historically sympathetic design. 

The building was inspected by Craig Martin of Martin Structural Consultants who said the building appears to be over 100 years old and is currently not safe. 

“The building was built with no notion of egress, ingress or fire safety and it has not had any updates to improve it,” Martin said in a letter to Schafer. “The foundation of the building has deteriorated and is failing to the point that it puts great stress on the rest of the building. The roof seems well over 40 years old and is in rough shape.”

During the meeting Tuesday, commission Vice Chair Carl Moss said with everything wrong with the building it looks like it would take more money to repair it than to tear it down. 

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The Port Huron Historic District Commission unanimously signed off on plans to demolish the building at 1110 Military St. and build a bigger one in Port Huron on Nov. 3, 2020. (Photo: Bryce Airgood/Times Herald)

“I think it’s a great fit for downtown,” Commissioner William Vogan said, and Schafer has done a good job providing renderings of buildings that look like they belong in that part of the city. 

Schafer said his company is under contract to purchase the property. The first steps are to close on the property and then work with the architect, after which he will come back to the city for informal discussions to make sure they’re on the right track. 

He said Tuesday they hadn’t obtained local permitting to operate but the process is in motion. 

“We’re hoping to have our application in the next three or four days,” he said. 

Contact Bryce Airgood at (810) 989-6202 or bairgood@gannett.com. Follow her on Twitter @bairgood123.

Read or Share this story: https://www.thetimesherald.com/story/news/2020/11/05/port-huron-marijuana-provisioning-center-project-moves-forward/6152020002/



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