Cannabis Retail Stores

Town Council approved a new section of Cochrane's Land Use Bylaw on May 28, 2018 to regulate Cannabis Retail Stores. This Bylaw was proposed in response to upcoming legalization of cannabis by the Federal government and the Province of Alberta’s regulations to allow the sale of cannabis through private retail stores. 

Applicants who wish to sell cannabis in a retail establishment in Cochrane must meet the requirements of the Land Use Bylaw* and the Town’s specific requirements for cannabis retail stores.

Important notes:

  • The Town begins accepting development permit applications for cannabis retail stores on a first-come, first-served basis at 8:30am October 1, 2018. Do not submit an application before October 1.
  • Applications must be made in-person by the applicant at the Cochrane RancheHouse. Applications emailed, mailed or couriered will not be accepted.

Thinking about opening a cannabis retail store?

Step 1: discuss your proposal with Planning staff as soon as possible. We can provide early guidance, describe the process and ensure you are headed in the right direction.

Step 2: complete and submit a cannabis retail store application form.
Tip: use the checklist to make sure you have everything you need

As an applicant, you are responsible to:

  • Submit all required information and materials in accordance with Town of Cochrane standards.
  • Verify your proposed location complies with the Town of Cochrane minimum setback requirements.
  • Apply for a Retail Cannabis Licence from the AGLC.
  • Obtain a signed letter of authorization from the registered owner of the parcel if you are a tenant.
  • Obtain a Building Permit if required.
  • Obtain a Town of Cochrane business licence if both a Development Permit and an AGLC Retail Cannabis Licence are issued.

What happens next?

Once we receive your application, Town staff give it a thorough review in the order it was submitted and determine if it is complete. Please note: only applications deemed complete will be added to the list of applications to be processed on October 17.  

If your application is incomplete, we'll get in touch to let you know what's missing. Applications deemed incomplete will not be further reviewed or processed until all required information has been submitted to the Town.

On October 17, 2018, the Town of Cochrane will begin reviewing and processing applications in the order they have been deemed complete. If the application is approved, the applicant will be required to provide a copy of their AGLC license to the Town.

* Applicable Land Use Bylaw 01-2004 Sections

Cannabis Retail Store provisions:

19.11.1 A Cannabis Retail Store shall meet a minimum separation distance of 150 metres from the nearest property line of a playground, child care services, day home, hospital, emergency medical facility, or school site.

  1. The minimum separation distance shall be established by measuring the shortest distance between the exterior wall of the proposed Cannabis Retail Store and the property line of the parcel of the other use.

19.11.2 A Cannabis Retail Store shall meet a minimum separation distance of 150 metres from the nearest exterior wall of another Cannabis Retail Store.

  1. The minimum separation distance shall be established by measuring the closest point between the exterior wall of each Cannabis Retail Store.

19.11.3 Signage and advertising related to the Cannabis Retail Store is prohibited on or in proximity of the approved site.

19.11.4 Notwithstanding Section 19.11.3, a Cannabis Retail Store operator may erect up to two (2) signs for the sole purpose of business identification on the same parcel as the premise.

19.11.5 Development proposals must consider and include elements to create a safe premise such as:

  1. Customer parking must be located in a well-lit location;
  2. Customer access to the store must have a well-lit exterior access visible from a street, sidewalk, or customer parking; and,
  3. Any other measures as required by the development authority.

19.11.6 Notwithstanding Section 3.1.2 and Section 3.2.3, the Development Authority will not accept a variance to a development permit application with respect to the Cannabis Retail Store provisions.