First-ever state-licensed marijuana stores to open Jan. 1, in Colorado
New York — Colorado will become the first state in the country to open recreational pot retail stores when, on Jan. 1, 2014, it begins allowing the sale of cannabis to anyone age 21 or over.
The move comes after voters in Colorado approved the measure in the November 2012 elections. The state of Washington also legalized recreational marijuana at the same time, but that state won’t open marijuana stores until later in 2014.
Cannabis will be legally sold and taxed in Colorado at specially regulated retailers in a system similar to what many states have in place for alcohol sales. In a big difference, however, purchases will be limited to an ounce of marijuana at a time. Purchases from out-of-state individuals are limited to a quarter-ounce.
Retail marijuana will have a 25% state tax — plus the usual state sales tax of 2.9% — making recreational pot one of the most heavily taxed consumer products in Colorado, according to CNN. Some communities are adding even more taxes to the product.
Only about eight are expected to be ready to open on Jan. 1, with the majority in Denver. And there are concerns that supplies will be sold out on the first day, the report said, with so few stores having passed the lengthy licensing process so far.
Colorado has issued a total of 348 recreational pot licenses to businesses statewide, according to the Colorado Department of Revenue’s Marijuana Enforcement Division, Reuters reported. Of those, 136 are for retail stores, 178 for cultivation operations, 31 for manufacturing of infused edibles and other sundries, and three are for testing facilities.
Report: Samsung hires Apple store designer
San Jose, Calif. – Samsung has reportedly hired a high-level store designer from Apple. According to multiple media reports, the U.S., telecom unit of Samsung recently hired Tim Gudgel, a five-year veteran store designer at Apple, as VP and GM of retail sales operations.
Gudgel also spent six years at the Gehry Partners architecture firm. While at Apple, he was designer on a patent filing related to the curved glass roof of the Apple Store in Manhattan. Samsung does not currently have any free-standing U.S, stores, although it does have some stores-within-a-store at U.S. Best Buy locations. Neither Samsung nor Apple has made any official comment.
Schimenti completes ground up construction of two Target stores
Ridgefield, Connecticut — Schimenti Construction Company completed ground up construction of two Target department stores, in Huntington and Staten Island, N.Y. — overcoming unique challenges exacerbated by Super Storm Sandy along the way.
While the hurricane did not cause major damage at either project, it did destroy fencing, displace materials and flood excavations. Both projects experienced fuel shortages, suffered delays in material supply, and required subcontractors to set up carpools to reach the worksites.
The $33 million, 140,000-sq.-ft., Staten Island project began in May 2012, was completed in September 2013, and opened to the public in October. All site and building work for this store was completed within the tight constraints of an existing mall with active retail tenants on all sides. Schimenti relocated the existing mall electrical feed prior to breaking ground and created an underground detention pond under the parking lot. The project architect was Robert M. Lucius Architects of Minneapolis.
The 151,000-sq.-ft. Huntington Target store was constructed on an 18-acre site in twelve months, concluding in October 2013. The scope of work for this $21 million project included building a 60-by 700-ft. evergreen retaining wall, a first for Schimenti.
Over six months, the company created the wall using a pre-cast structure, which eventually will be completely overgrown by ivy. The store’s walls were made of 230 pre-cast concrete panels, enabling the company to erect the building in just 10 days. To meet final elevations, Schimenti exported 50,000 cubic yards of soil. Architect was Mulvanney G2 Architects, Seattle.
Both Target stores are LEED-certified. Schimenti has completed more than 100 projects for Target.