Hayward approves second downtown dispensary: ‘We’re basically making the downtown a drug hub’

A second cannabis dispensary is coming to downtown Hayward. A conditional-use permit was granted Tuesday night to Jiva Life for a retail establishment at the former Hayward Fishery restaurant on the corner of Foothill Boulevard and C Street.

Hayward officials last year approved a cannabis dispensary on B Street. Like the location approved this week, the Cookies dispensary occupies a building that been in disuse for some time.

The proposal came to the council with strong support from labor, the local Chamber of Commerce, along with the blessing of the planning commission, Councilmember Francisco Zermeno said.

“Looking at all of the aspects of this project, it’s going to refurbished that corner. Weighing everything and balancing it out, I think it’s a good project and I support it,” Zermeno added.

The location for third dispensary – the second on B Street – has been approved by the city, but a conditional-use permit has not yet been granted. A fourth cannabis dispensary currently operates in nearby unincorporated Alameda County.

The possibility of the downtown area being saturated with dispensaries concerned two councilmembers on Tuesday night.

“Once this council vision is fully implement we’ll have five dispensaries downtown, all within one neighborhood. I don’t think the residents of Hayward, and I don’t think, particularly, the residents of downtown Hayward, envisioned this policy to be implemented — all of them within their neighborhood,” said Councilmember Mark Salinas, historically a staunch opponent of dispensaries in Hayward.

In the past, Salinas has lodged complaints over the city’s pursuit for relegating dispensaries to the downtown areas, as opposed to other parts of the city, including those surrounding the upscale Stonebrae neighborhood in the Hayward Hills.

“Their argument with this was quite clear,” Salinas said of Stonebrae residents. “They said, “They didn’t spend a million-and-a-half dollars on their homes to live next to a dispensary.'” Salinas also doubts dispensary customers will provide a needed jolt to the moribund downtown area by frequenting other establishments.

Councilmember Aisha Wahab also criticized the city’s planning for multiple dispensaries within a roughly two miles area of downtown. “When you have two restaurants that serve the same type of food,” Wahab said, for example, “it doesn’t work. One business tanks. It’s not going to be a lively neighborhood.” She later added, “We’re basically making the downtown a drug hub.”

Jiva Life representatives estimate the dispensary will generate $10 million in sales during its first three years and potentially create $700,000 in tax revenue for Hayward, according to a staff report. However, revenue estimates by dispensary applicants in other East Bay cities in recent years, including tax receipts, and pledges to contribute to local charitable causes are notoriously rosy and often unreliable.

13 thoughts on “Hayward approves second downtown dispensary: ‘We’re basically making the downtown a drug hub’

  1. Wait no existence of viable stores?
    Viable business like the Lucky’s and Safeway grocery? The dozens of restaurants around A, B, C streets and Foothill (albeit that’s *DOWTOWN* not the hills or South Hayward. The bike shop, arcade, thrift stores, and small clothing businesses like Vintage Alley (shout outs with Love) are they not viable?
    Hayward has hood rat acting city planners in suits. I admit I’d rather have independent, small businesses, in lieu of those Hub/Union Landing like strip malls with the sames stores but let’s put aside the hyperbole of nonexistent viable businesses as that is childish. Hell discussing this on the internet in stead of calling and writing our city officials is childish. I’m out.


  2. Even before these dispensaries popped up, Hayward has always been “Oakland Jr”. Moved here as a kid in 1998 or so…the majority of people living here have a “I’ma hoodstar but live in the suburbs mentality”. My folks regret moving here but that makeshift golf course neighborhood lured them in and now their house is Falling Apart. Should’ve moved in a better built non-model home in south of Fremont.
    A dispensary is definitely NOT the root cause of the hoodrat mentality…as I have noticed that from 20 years ago.
    Hayward is Wayward. The hills of Hayward are redeemable only for nature’s sake. But downtown, west area down Tennyson, parts of SOUTH Hayward are just now FINALLY getting makeovers. It’s not the weed, it’s the city planners, the people, the spirit of this city is just more LAZY than that of other cities *south of Industrial and Mission*. As I heard a liquor store owner say: “It all goes down hill NORTH of Industrial Pkwy”.

    Milpitas I’m running towards you!


  3. Hayward will never have a Trader Joe’s or Wholefoods because they don’t belong to a Union. The Hayward government and council will alway put Unions over the citizens. They don’t have the courage to do whats right.


  4. She made sense. There is no plan for downtown and she has consistently stated that is a problem. She wasn’t talking about “working class” citizens. She was saying this is a bad plan. She has been the most consistent and pushed for the regular residents the most (housing, wages, and protection). Marquez was bought by the Chamber – her last vote on housing clearly showed that and her reasoning was pathetic. Lamnin has done nothing for homeless or housing and her votes have shown that. The rest are terrible. You seem to post on Wahab the most.


  5. Foothill to A Street, down A, the whole loop is just the freeway that was never built. All the commuters that use the downtown area as a bypass should be subject to a toll. Hey planners, there’s another thought for more revenue.


  6. Enough is enough! Absolutely no existence of any viable businesses i.e. Traders Joe’s, Whole Foods, restaurants & retail stores. Also, the one way freeway located on Mission from A to Jackson is a major catastrophe!


  7. Wahab is so fake. She acts like she cares about the real working class of Hayward and then goes and approves another dispensary. All talk and no integrity


  8. First the owner of the building likes this because he’s probably leasing the space for twice what market rent is. The city sees dollar signs. The potential business owner has visions of grandeur.

    What the people in the area will see is lines of people waiting out front with guards screening them from 9 to 9, seven days a week. Commuters using Hayward as a bypass on the loop can stop by because their cities don’t make it so convenient to pick up their refreshments. They mention the security. This is more than the banks in Hayward, then ask why security is such an issue.


  9. A- GREED! They see 700,000 and bend over backwards. Did they try to save the businesses like the Fishery that went under? NO…


  10. She is right when said “We’re basically making the downtown a drug hub.” Hayward became a dumpster and a trashy city!!!!!!!!!!


  11. So sad that the Unions make the Communist City Council approve another dope house, and have them deny a Trader Joe’s or Whole Foods to be built in Hayward.


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