A new marijuana dispensary has opened just north of Denver, with an eye on residents of nearby towns. Berkeley Dispensary, a pot shop in unincorporated Adams County, sits right by the borders of Arvada and Westminster, suburbs that ban marijuana sales.
Since more than 330,000 residents live in the two towns combined, Berkeley Dispensary co-owner Rita Tsalyuk sees an opportunity to serve suburban stoners and commuters alike. The shop is part of Yuma Way, a dispensary ownership group with stores in Glendale, Longmont and Denver's Lincoln Park neighborhood, so she's used to serving customers off the beaten path.
"Being the closest [dispensary] to Arvada, the location is very convenient for the west side of town as well as transit travelers," she says. "The west side of the Denver metro has finally added this convenient option." In fact, the new dispensary is so close to Arvada that even Google Maps lists the town in Berkeley Dispensary's address — but the store is actually outside the border, according to Tsalyuk.
Denver-area dispensaries have been chasing suburban marijuana consumers living in towns without pot sales for some time. Denver and Wheat Ridge have a handful of dispensaries on the Arvada border, while Thornton and Federal Heights serve customers driving from southern parts of Broomfield (another town that bans dispensaries) and Westminster.
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Berkeley Dispensary's location is even more potentially lucrative, since it's in Berkeley Village, a shopping center north of the Berkeley neighbored nestled between interstates 70 and 76. Yuma Way put up a billboard-sized sign to catch drivers' attention as they head home from work, and brought in psychedelic artist Derek Carpenter to paint the storefront.
Yuma Way also owns the Coffee Joint, Denver's only licensed business for marijuana social use.
Berkeley Dispensary is now open seven days a week from 8 a.m. to 9:45 p.m. at 5398 Sheridan Boulevard. The company is still hiring employees for its newest dispensary, Tsalyuk says.