It's been just more than four years since Colorado voted to legalize recreational marijuana for people older than 21. Now, one Colorado business wants to make buying pot as seamless as ordering a burger.
The Glenwood Springs Post Independent reported that the Parachute, Colorado, Board of Trustees voted Thursday to approve a business license for Tumbleweed Express, which is owned by Green Cross Colorado, LLC. Tumbleweed is scheduled to open in March in what used to be a car wash.
Tumbleweed Express will become the first drive-thru marijuana dispensary in the state of Colorado.
“As far as I can tell, we are not aware of this business model ever coming up before,” Robert Goulding, spokesman for the Colorado Marijuana Enforcement Division, said, according to the Coloradoan. The MED is part of the Colorado Department of Revenue. It enforces regulations on marijuana similar to the ways in which regulations on tobacco and alcohol sales are enforced by a separate division.
Tumbleweed Express also had to obtain the approval of the Colorado Marijuana Enforcement Division before it could operate legally.
The enforcement agency laid a few ground rules for the drive-thru dispensary. They include restricting anyone younger than 21 from being on the premises of the dispensary, requiring surveillance of all areas where transactions will occur and prohibiting marijuana from being seen outside of the business.
The Post Independent noted it will be much easier for the business to meet these criteria because Tumbleweed Express will operate in an old car wash facility, thereby obscuring the view from outside, rather than in a traditional fast-food style drive-thru that is more open.
While it will be the first drive-thru marijuana dispensary in Colorado, it won't be the first of its kind in the U.S.
A similar business model, owned by Green Life Oregon, was believed to be the first drive-thru recreational marijuana dispensary in the country, according to Time. It opened April 20, 2016 (4-20) in Gold Beach, Oregon, according to OregonLive.com.
Before April 2016, medical marijuana drive-thru dispensaries operated in Washington State and in Michigan, but those businesses required a doctor's prescription. They did not sell marijuana for recreational use, according to Time.