Businesses Fume As Parking Remains Scarce Near Pot Dispensary

Bernie Tafoya
February 21, 2020 - 3:45 pm
Pot Parking Spaces

WBBM Newsradio/Bernie Tafoya

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NORTH AURORA (WBBM NEWSRADIO) -- Parking issues continue to hamper businesses near a North Aurora pot dispensary nearly two months after recreational-use marijuana became legal in Illinois.

Lawyer Jim Jensen says that when Verilife in North Aurora shortened its hours of operation recently, the parking situation became worse. 

Instead of being open for recreational users several days a week, Verilife reduced days and hours to Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays during the late afternoon and evening. That forced larger numbers of Verilife customers to converge on the dispensary on Route 31 in a more limited slot, he say.

Some would illegally park in nearby private lots like the one for Jim Jensen’s law firm.

“We have a towing service now. He’s probably towed, I would say, about 30 cars,” he said Friday.

North Aurora Village Administrator Steve Bosco says he hears the complaints and now is working with one specific person locally at Verilife. 

“Apparently they worked out a plan where they were able to coordinate 40 spaces on-site for recreational use.”

Bosco says Verilife has said it has added security staff to help prevent traffic and parking problems. The North Aurora Police Department is directly across the street from Verilife and that people can park in that lot, he noted.

Bosco and Jensen are hoping for reduced pot traffic in the coming months when marijuana dispensaries open in neighboring Aurora.

“No matter how many signs you put up, no matter how many people you put in front of a building to direct traffic, there’s always going to be people who are  going to find the quickest, easiest way to park,” Bosco said.