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National City approves 3 cannabis businesses, first weed lounge coming soon

During a city council meeting National City approved licenses for three businesses and now the weed lounge will be the first in the county.

SAN DIEGO — National City has high expectations after months of dealing with a three part permit process. Three cannabis businesses have been approved to move forward with their plans, including the first weed lounge in San Diego County.

“With our ordinance we approved up to six, but yesterday we only approved three of them. We are going to take in the next couple of months consideration of the other three. There are some that are still in review,” said Councilmember Jose Rodriguez, who is in favor of cannabis businesses opening up in the city.  

However, one business, Session by the Bay, is breaking the grass ceiling even further by remodeling California San Diego’s former college building on Marina Dr. into a marijuana consumption lounge.

This marijuana consumption lounge will be the first not only in National city, but in the entire county. 

That means abandoned classrooms will be replaced by what could look like a massive local dive bar, but with marijuana on tap. 

Consumption lounges are considered the next big thing in the industry. These lounges let patrons buy cannabis products and consume them all in one location. 

They have also become popular in areas like Palm Springs, San Francisco and Los Angeles.

The only problem is that several safety and health factors have hindered their expansion in other places and in National City some locals have voiced the same concerns.

Councilmember Jose Rodriguez says the cannabis businesses should bring in additional tax revenue, while at the same time attracting tourists.

Rodriguez also believes the legal weed industry will challenge the local black market. 

“It’s important that we make sure that we take care of the illicit market in the city. Get it out of the neighborhoods and we fully legalize the industry. We passed these propositions in the state of California,” said Rodriguez.

As for consumption concerns, Rodriguez says the lounge will have security and strict protocols in place.

There is no exact date on when the lounge will open, but the city does say remodeling will take up to ten months. 

WATCH RELATED: New In-N-Out coming to National City; inside the plans to mitigate traffic (Dec. 2022).


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