[DISCLOSURE: The author is a member of the Abington Planning Board]
An Adams Street mattress store would be converted into a rural-themed cannabis shop under a proposal that will be reviewed by the Planning Board Monday night.
NashMac, LLC, one of the five cannabis businesses that have struck deals with the town, is hoping to open CannaBarn later this spring at 678 Adams Street. If approved, it would be the first step in a three-phase plan to create a larger cannabis operation on the site that includes cultivation, manufacturing, retail, and delivery.
“We’re very excited about opening up in Abington,” said NashMac President Michael Nashawaty, a Braintree attorney.
The property currently features an 1,800 square foot, 120-year-old, gambrel-roofed retail space near the street, and an L-shaped single-story warehouse structure built in 1971 in the rear. The retail space most recently has been home to Wayne’s Sleep Shop. Before that, it was the Jenkins and Simmons Trucking Terminal office.
According to plans submitted to the Planning Board, Nashawaty would overhaul the shop’s exterior to more closely resemble a barn, complete with faux barn doors facing the street, and a farmer’s porch along the northern side. The white aluminium siding on the first floor exterior would be replaced by a white vertical fiber cement-style siding, with the second floor exterior receiving a darker treatment.
The plans also call for improvements to the site’s landscaping and parking areas.
The Planning Board meeting starts at 6 p.m., at Town Hall.
If the shop is approved, Nashawaty says the next step would involve launching a delivery operation. After that, the company would upgrade the warehouse space in the back and use it to grow and manufacture its own cannabis products. Nashawaty says that the retail shop will create more than 20 full and part-time jobs, with a preference given to Abington residents.
“Once we have some sales, it will be easier for us to get the capital we’re looking for to start the cultivation piece,” Nashawaty said.
Nashawaty is leasing the property from RJM Realty Trust; Wayne Warmington, who ran the mattress shop, is listed as the lead trustee.
Nashawaty was involved in the effort to raise the number of retail cannabis licenses available in Abington. Special Town Meeting in November 2020 voted to raise the cap from two to five, or 50 percent of the number of retail stores that sell beer, wine, and alcohol.
The town so far as Community Host Agreements with five cannabis businesses, only one of which is open right now.
Bud’s Good’s and Provisions, Abington’s first retail cannabis shop, opened its doors last year at 1540 Bedford Street.
Green Harbor Dispensary, a retail shop proposed for 1410 Bedford Street, has local approvals in hand but has not yet started construction.
Natural Agricultural Products has received approval to open a new cannabis retail, wholesale, cultivation, and manufacturing operation at 1447 Bedford Street. President Gary Leonard said the company has started the interior buildout, and is waiting for state regulators to approve the license transfer from its original Brockton location to the new Abington one.
Doorzips, an online, delivery-only service based out of South Shore Terminals at 1431 Bedford Street, won Planning Board approval late last year.
An unnamed business is reportedly interested in establishing a 100,000-square-foot manufacturing and cultivation operation at the new commercial development at 500 Chestnut Street. The Planning Board Monday will also review a possible zoning change that would expand the town’s marijuana overlay district to Chestnut Street. According to draft language, the area off Chestnut Street would be limited to manufacturing and cultivation, and exclude retail.
Under the community host agreements, Abington will receive 3 percent of gross revenue to cover any expenses incurred by regulating, monitoring, inspecting, or policing the businesses. In addition, Abington approved a 3 percent local sales tax, which applies to retail, wholesale, and delivery sales.
NashMac’s business plan says it hopes to eventually generate more than $15 million in retail sales annually, which would produce $450,000 in local sales taxes for Abington. The town estimates it will take in $215,000 in dispensary taxes this year with just Bud’s open.
There are currently 29 active retail licenses in Plymouth County. The state Cannabis Control Commission reported collecting $112 million in excise taxes in 2021 – more than double what they expected.