Boston’s first recreational marijuana shop is slated to open next week after state cannabis regulators gave the company its final sign-off Thursday.
The team at Pure Oasis in Dorchester’s Grove Hall community will welcome their first customers at 11 a.m. on Monday, according to co-owners Kobie Evans and Kevin Hart. In addition to being Boston’s first adult-use dispensary, it will also be the state’s first store run by a member of the economic empowerment program, which was built to help people enter the cannabis industry who have been disproportionately hurt by marijuana prohibition.
“It’s surreal to make it to the finish line because this started over a conversation about there not being opportunities for people who look like us,” Hart said.
Both Evans and Hart said this week they were racing to finish preparations ahead of the opening.
“It’s mixed emotions,” Evans said. “Depending upon where the second hand is on the clock, it’s either we’re excited, or we’re overwhelmed, or we’re anxious.”
Pure Oasis was the first economic empowerment applicant to receive a final license from the commission. Eight provisional licenses have been granted to economic empowerment applicants, and an additional five were approved for licenses by the Cannabis Control Commission on Thursday.
Commission chairman Steven Hoffman told reporters after the agency’s meeting that the opening of Pure Oasis is an “incredibly important milestone.”
“It’s great for Boston, but I’m way more interested in the fact that it’s our first economic empowerment applicant that’s made it all the way through the process," Hoffman said. “That being said, I recognize that it’s one store. We’ve got a lot more work to do.”
Mayor Martin J. Walsh also congratulated Evans and Hart on Thursday, saying he is proud that the city’s first adult-use store doubles as the state’s first economic empowerment owner-led store.
“We have been very diligent to ensure that as the legal cannabis industry gets off the ground in Boston that there is a strong regulatory process in place, and that the industry represents our values of supporting equity, diversity, and local ownership," Walsh said in a statement.
Pure Oasis received its “commence operations” notice from the commission Thursday, allowing company owners to open their doors after three calendar days — Monday at the earliest. The store is located at 430 Blue Hill Ave.
One other store — Nova Farms in Attleboro — also received a “commence operations” notice from the commission on Thursday, allowing it to began adult-use retail sales as early as Monday.
The Boston store’s opening will come almost exactly a year after the opening of New England Treatment Access in Brookline, the first store to open in metro Boston. About 2,500 customers shopped at NETA on just its opening day, and company leaders say they continue to see approximately that same number of customers daily.
Even months after its opening, NETA remained one of the busiest marijuana stores in America.
To prepare for the crowds expected after the Grove Hall store opens, Pure Oasis will hire several police details. Together with the store's security staff, the police will work to prevent and enforce parking issues, traffic problems, and public consumption of marijuana.
Pure Oasis leaders say they expect to have up to 1,000 customers a day, and they’ve rented a space next door to the shop where about 100 people can wait in line indoors. Security will be on hand to ensure customers aren’t clogging local sidewalks.
The store also will offer online preorders.
Pure Oasis is seeking local approvals to open two more stores, in Mattapan and Medford. There are 39 other adult-use stores open in Massachusetts as of Tuesday.
Three other companies have received provisional licenses to open adult-use stores in Boston: Ascend Mass near North Station, Berkshire Roots in East Boston, and Core Empowerment in Jamaica Plain. The Cannabis Control Commission just approved Core Empowerment’s license at its meeting Thursday.
Dan Adams of the Globe staff contributed to this report.
Naomi Martin can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.