Alberta Gaming, Liquor and Cannabis (AGLC) has approved cannabis retail licenses for two new stores in Lethbridge, which once opened, will bring the city’s total to nine shops.
For many — including the owner of newly licensed shop Nirvana in west Lethbridge — it has been a long wait.
Singh has been paying rent for his empty location for over a year.
A moratorium was issued by AGLC in November; preventing the acceptance of new retail licence applications as well as the issuing of new retail licences, due to a low supply of product.
The moratorium was lifted on May 30 once the AGLC felt their supply had sufficiently increased to meet the demand. Less than a month later, Singh got the green light for his shop.
The green light was also given to Fire and Flower, which will become the fifth cannabis store along Mayor Magrath Drive. Nirvana becomes the third store on the west side of Lethbridge, and there is one additional store in the downtown core.
The AGLC website lists 156 total licensees in the province.
The addition of more stores has raised slight concern from existing shops in the city, as they wonder if there’s enough product keep everyone happy.
Twenty Four Karats was the second cannabis retail store opened in Lethbridge back in November and Caldwell said that while there was a learning curve for everyone in the new business, things have improved quickly.
According to the City of Lethbridge, 35 development permits have been issued in the city — with just two having been withdrawn — and 13 business licenses have been issued.