CTV Vancouver Island - Published Wednesday, April 3, 2019 4:19PM PDT



Victoria could soon get its first recreational cannabis store after a local group received the first provincial licence in B.C.'s capital.





The updated interior of Cloud Nine Collective, a recreational cannabis dispensary on Victoria's Fort Street, is shown. The dispensary is the first in Victoria to receive its provincial licence. April 3, 2019. (Submitted)


Victoria could soon get its first recreational cannabis store after a local group received the first provincial licence in B.C.'s capital.


Cloud Nine Collective at 778 Fort St. passed its final provincial inspection and now has a licence in hand.


The store is now waiting to receive its business licence from the City of Victoria and anticipates opening within the next two weeks.


"We're extremely excited to be the first provincially licensed cannabis retail store under the new regulations in the City of Victoria," owner Brandon Arsens told CTV News.


If Cloud Nine becomes the first recreational cannabis shop to open in Victoria, it could also become the second to open on all of Vancouver Island after Port Hardy's North Island Cannabis (formerly Stellar Jay Organics) was approved in January.


Staff at the store have been working to upgrade the space with new point-of-sale systems and a fresh coat of paint in anticipation of reopening. Arsens said the business will employ around a dozen workers when it officially opens.


The province has also confirmed that a cannabis retail licence was issued to Cloud Nine Collective and that so far it's the only such licence that has been issued in Victoria.


The City of Victoria has also issued recommendations to the Liquor and Cannabis Regulation Branch for several other cannabis shops, including Original Farm and Clarity Cannabis.