Native Roots gets permission to move pot shop near DIA despite protests

Native Roots wins permission to open a medical marijuana shop just minutes from DIA.

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Denver's latest cash crop. (Kevin J. Beaty/Denverite)  marijuana; pot; weed; denver; colorado; denverite; kevinjbeaty;

Denver's latest cash crop. (Kevin J. Beaty/Denverite)

Native Roots won permission earlier this month to transfer a medical marijuana shop from North Pecos Street to a spot closer to Denver International Airport.

Denver Councilwoman Stacie Gilmore and other DIA neighborhood residents protested the move saying there was no demand for a pot shop in the community. But the Denver Department of Excise and Licenses upheld its Dec. 7 decision to approve Native Roots’ request.

The executive director of the department, Ashley Kilroy, found “no factual or legal grounds to overturn” the approval. Kilroy concluded that Native Roots successfully showed “the neighborhood needs and desires a medical marijuana center,” according to a final decision document dated Feb. 16 and posted on Gilmore’s Facebook page Tuesday.

According to the city’s website, there are no other marijuana companies operating in the DIA neighborhood.

Native Roots operates more than 15 marijuana shops throughout the state, according to its website. On Feb. 8, 2016, the Denver-based cannabis company asked for permission to acquire Alive Herbal Medicine’s medical marijuana center license and transfer the shop about 13 miles northeast from 4573 N. Pecos St. in Sunnyside to 7050 N. Tower Road near DIA.

Native Roots is working to ensure that patients have access to medicine across the city of Denver. There is a clear need and desire for the surrounding neighborhood residents who currently have to drive about 10 miles to Denver or Aurora to have access to a medical center,” Native Roots spokeswoman Tia Mattson said in a statement Wednesday.

In order to open, Native Roots has to have a sign in its shop explaining that hotels and other lodgings in the area predominately do not allow smoking and patrons should ask before consuming marijuana on their properties.

Business & data reporter Adrian D. Garcia can be reached via email at agarcia@denverite.com or twitter.com/adriandgarcia.