By Steve Elliott
Portland should ease its restrictions on marijuana stores in the downtown area to encourage development of a "green light district," according to one city commissioner.
"We have a nightlife district," Commissioner Dan Saltzman said, reports Willamette Week. "Why not have a green light district?"
The Portland City Council on Wednesday will consider amendments to its recently adopted weed regulations, including a requirement for at least 1,000 feet between retail pot stores. Saltzman said he plans to introduce another amendment on Wednesday which would lift the 1,000-foot buffer entirely in central Portland, which includes downtown and the Lloyd District.
Marijuana stores would still be required to be at least 1,000 feet away from schools, Saltzman said.
The commissioner's plan would require two more votes from the City Council. It grew from his concern and frustration over Portland's over-regulation of weed after voters approved legalization.
"It seems like it's creating a nightmare out there, on top of already complicated rules from the state," he said.
Loosening the rules downtown would make it possible for pot shops to cater to tourists, while also protecting the rest of Portland's neighborhoods from being unduly impacted by the proliferation of shops, according to Saltzman.
"Downtown can cater to 'green' tourism -- a new kind of green tourism," he said.