Floor plan

What might retail cannabis dispensaries look like? | Bond Schoeneck & King SARL

While promising licensees not falling under the definition of “justice involved” are not yet able to apply for retail cannabis dispensary licenses, they should pay close attention to developments related to retail dispensaries. for conditional use for adults (CAURD). Many of our cannabis customers are eagerly awaiting regulations that not only govern the application process for unconditional retail dispensaries, but also govern what their dispensaries will have to look like.

The New York State Dormitory Authority (DASNY) recently issued a Request for Proposals (RFP) seeking proposals from entities capable of renovating existing spaces to create Retail Cannabis Dispensaries (RCDs) for candidates for social and economic equity. Although final regulations regarding RCD design specifications have yet to be released by the Cannabis Control Board (CCB), the RPD provides useful information. indications of what the first DDRs should look like. Although the RFP was proposed specifically for social equity licensees, the building guidelines contained in the RFP will likely apply to all licensees. As we wrote previously, Social Equity Licensees will be assigned the first 150 RCD authorizations.

General areas in RCDs

The RFP requires that DCRs for Social and Economic Equity Applicants have the following areas within the DCR:

  1. Reception and check-in area(s)
  2. Sales area and display area, including display cases equipped with pocket locks, touchpads and/or key codes
  3. brand wall
  4. Sales and service counter, comprising approximately 5-10 points of sale (POS) with system software such as Leaf Logix and hardware such as computers, iPads and scanners
  5. Certain “back of the house” areas and rooms, including:
    1. Product receivables area
    2. Cannabis processing workroom with stainless steel cutting tables, UL certified scales and label printers
    3. Vault and/or secure reserve
    4. Secure waste room
    5. Office space(s)
    6. General storage space with metal storage shelves
    7. Toilets reserved for employees and accessible
    8. Concierge closet
    9. Electrical/data closet
    10. Mechanical room (if needed)
    11. Break room


Generally, RCDs should have a master security plan that meets New York State Department of Health security requirements and includes the following:

  1. Indoor and outdoor video surveillance with 24-hour recording and the ability to produce a still color photo at 9600 dpi with timestamp
  2. Interior and exterior access controls and alarm systems
  3. Security floor plan
  4. Emergency alarm systems
  5. Motion detectors
  6. Duress alarms at sales counters
  7. Glass break detectors
  8. Automatic voice or digital dialer
  9. Fault notification system that provides notification of any fault in the monitoring system
  10. Ability of all safety equipment to remain operational during a power outage
  11. Perimeter of the installation illuminated
  12. Pinless hinges on all doors
  13. Secure network access

The walls and ceilings of any secure cannabis storage space (i.e. vault) must be framed with heavy gauge metal studs with 9 gauge expanded wire mesh installed on the unsecured side of the storage. frame with tamper-proof fasteners. Door assemblies must be equipped as ANSI/SDI A250.8 LEVEL4 rated maximum duty assemblies with Security Level 1 accessible cylinder or mortise locks. Any secure storage space must also have a unit Dedicated HVAC capable of maintaining specific temperature and humidity controls.

Additionally, RCD windows must have exterior glazing systems that meet the specific requirements of current NYS/NYC energy conservation building codes and are treated with a safety film.

Building finishes

The RFP provides RCD owners with options related to interior building finishes. Flooring may consist of luxury vinyl tiles, porcelain floor tiles, entrance mats, carpet tiles (for offices only) and/or polished concrete. RCD walls shall be thermoset rubber baseboard and may be finished with Benjamin Moore specific paint, vinyl wallcovering or Acrovyn wall protection (for delivery areas). RCDs also have the following options for all ceilings in unsecured areas: GWB soffits, USG or Armstrong acoustical ceiling tiles or clouds and canopies, exposed ceilings, and wall-to-ceiling lightbox material. RCDs should also have counter-height stools, horizontal blinds or roller shades, hand sanitizer dispensers, and indoor/outdoor planters.


RCDs should implement appropriate ventilation and filtration systems to provide mitigation of cannabis odors and a general building HVAC system. Fire protection systems should be maintained in accordance with applicable building codes and backup generators should be installed to keep security, HVAC and POS systems operational during any potential power outages. Additionally, the RFP recommends, but does not require, that DCRs include rolling barriers, parking, ATMs, and building signage related to retail branding.

Even though all of the guidelines contained in the RFP may not be codified in official cannabis regulations, these guidelines should be instrumental for prospective cannabis business owners in budgeting and planning for funding needs. potentials. Starting a cannabis business won’t come without upfront costs, and the advice in the RFP helps hopeful licensees get real about it.

Additionally, non-cannabis businesses should familiarize themselves with the requirements of the RFP and determine if it presents potential new business opportunities. For example, it may make sense for customers who operate HVAC businesses to partner with hopeful unconditional retail dispensary seekers, knowing that any RCD will likely need to be outfitted with multiple, specialized HVAC units. .

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