The Brunswick Planning Board discussed a conditional use permit for a medical marijuana facility and hosted a workshop about the Steep Slope Ordinance on June 25. Taylor Abbott / The Forecaster

BRUNSWICK — The Planning Board approved a conditional use permit June 25 for a medical marijuana caregiving facility called Midcoast Elevated, which is projected to open by the first week of August.

The permit is the first one granted under a town ordinance that took effect this year.

Brothers Keith and Kevin Carlon, who have more than six years of experience working in the medical marijuana field, said they hope to open a “modest caregiver storefront” that complies with Brunswick’s Marijuana Ordinance, which went into effect Jan. 1.

The permit was approved pending a letter from the Brunswick Fire Chief stating that adequacy of fire hydrants and dimensions of the lot are safe.

The board also hosted a workshop to continue discussing a permanent solution to the steep-slope ordinance for issuing building permits to landowners in the Rural Protection 1 and RP 2 zones that meshes with the town’s zoning ordinances.

To obtain a license to open a medical marijuana storefront, applicants must be at least 21 years of age, pass a background and criminal history check, cannot have been convicted of a “disqualifying” drug charge and must assure the odor cannot be detected from outside the building.

“We hope to provide a one-on-one consultation and a discreet experience to any of our current and potential patients of the storefront,” Keith Carlon said. “This will allow us to help them identify types and amounts of products that will be the safest and most enjoyable for them in their experience with cannabis.”

The facility, which will only allow sales of medical marijuana, hopes to operate much like a pharmacy, according to Carlon. This allows for a more personal experience to make the process more enjoyable and informational for customers.

“When you come in, it’s not going to feel somebody’s living room or a parking lot. We hope to achieve more of a first-in, first-out pharmacy experience, not like a retail experience.” Keith Carlon said.

Midcoast Elevated is at 14 Industrial Parkway in a 1,200-square-foot office space in the industrial zone. Proposed changes include minor cosmetic improvements to the interior, as well as the installation of security systems and ADA parking spaces and a ramp to enter the building.

Steep slopes

In other business, the board continued to discuss a permanent solution for issuing permits to landowners in the Rural Protection 1 and RP 2 zones that are in compliance with the Steep Slope Zoning Ordinance.

The ordinance, which was rewritten in 2017, dictates that on land where slopes exceed 15 percent in a parcel more than 5,000 square feet, the minimum building setback should be 75 feet. However, permits have been issued for properties that did not meet the 75-foot setback.

The board was asked by the Town Council, which met with planners June 17, to come up with a proposal for a permanent solution for properties that were issued permits and are nonconforming.

At the June 17 Town Council meeting, an amendment to the ordinance was approved that allows property owners to build within 25 to 75 feet of a 15 percent slope as long as they can address any stormwater runoff. The plan must be done with the assistance of a certified civil engineer.

The Planning Board meeting on June 25 included a workshop to consider solutions for properties within the RP zones that are legal but nonconforming for future construction.

An approach that was mentioned was a standard where those who wish to develop on their properties in an RP1 or RP2 zone can disregard slope setbacks and instead must come up with a stormwater management plan with the help of a certified civil engineer. By doing this, the Planning Board believes that many of the nonconforming issues would be eliminated.