First government-run cannabis store in the capital region opens at Uptown

The provincial government opened its first cannabis retail store in the capital region on Wednesday at Uptown shopping centre.

Saanich council gave the green light to the B.C. Cannabis Store — the sixth on Vancouver Island after ones in Nanaimo, Parksville, Courtenay, Campbell River and Port Alberni — after a public hearing last year where there was little opposition to the idea, according to Coun. Colin Plant.

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The B.C. Cannabis Store at Unit E-109 Blanshard Street is open daily.

Saanich is allowing cannabis shops near where beer and wine is already sold, as long as the location is not within 200 metres of schools.

Recreational cannabis became legal on Oct. 17, 2018.

Private cannabis stores are already operating in Victoria.

The B.C. Cannabis Stores website indicates 27 government-run cannabis stores are operating and six — including another in Nanaimo — are in the planning stages.

ceharnett@timescolonist.com

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