CAMH Hears From Cannabis Retailer, Votes on Delle Ave. Properties

     On Wednesday, November 20, the Community Alliance of Mission Hill (CAMH) met for its regularly scheduled monthly meeting. The agenda featured a presentation for a cannabis retail shop and a vote on two Delle Ave. properties.

-Raices on the Hill

     Mike Ross and Jeffrey Sanchez presented a proposal to transform the site of Diablo Glass Studio at 123 Terrace Street into a retail cannabis store called Raices on the Hill (raices is Spanish for roots). They are currently in the community outreach phase of the state’s exhaustive licensing application process.

     The existing glass studio site is almost 5,000 square feet and has ten dedicated parking spaces. Ross and Sanchez expect Raices to be open to the public seven days a week from 9am to 8pm and to hire around 20 employees at an hourly wage of $15. The shop also plans to hire individuals from communities most affected by the government’s “war on drugs.”

     Raices is a majority Latino-owned company, with Alex Oliver-Davila and Jeffrey Sanchez owning 51 percent. Raices will also employ Boston’s first Latino police superintendent Rafael Ruiz as its head of security. Of the company’s investors, 85 percent are Boston residents and 62 percent are Black or Latino. Notably, the owners are planning to invest ten percent of all profits back into the local community and will create a board to decide how best to do so.

     Owners would comply with current retail cannabis legislation, which prohibits the sale of cannabis to individuals under the age of 21 and the display of any signage depicting cannabis. Customers can be banned for reselling products purchased at the shop or consuming them on the property. Discreet van deliveries would be made up to three times a week.

     One concern was an increase in vehicle traffic along Terrace Street due to patrons of the shop. Ross and Sanchez said they were willing to consider an appointment-only sales strategy in order to mitigate the traffic situation. They are also working with Diablo staff members to explore options for keeping the glass studio in operation.

     There are currently 241 approved cannabis retailers in Massachusetts, with 14 in Boston. The application process requires potential owners to host a community meeting in the proposed area, which Ross and Sanchez hope to realize in January.

     The presenters pointed out that 78 percent of residents in Ward 10, where the shop would be located, voted in favor of retail cannabis.

-45 Delle Ave.

     The developers of 45 Delle Avenue were seeking a variance for lack of parking. Twenty-five CAMH members voted in favor of the project and two voted against it with one abstaining.

     It was previously reported that this renovation would involve adding entry doors and a kitchen, when actually the kitchen has already been added and no external changes to the facade will be undertaken.

-16-18 Delle Ave.

     CAMH voted on a property at 16-18 Delle Avenue that was seeking many variances for a nine-unit building. Twenty-seven members voted against the project with one person abstaining.

     The Gazette previously reported that the proposal was for a renovation project for two three-family buildings, but it is actually a new construction of one nine-unit building on a vacant lot.

Community Alliance of Mission Hill meets on the third Wednesday of the month in auditorium G-3 of the Kresge building at Harvard’s Chan School of Public Health at 677 Huntington Ave. from 7 to 8:30 p.m. Their next meeting will be on Wednesday, December 18. All members of the Mission Hill community are invited to attend.

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