Urbana Marijuana Dispensary Nears Opening Date
Champaign County is about two weeks from having multiple sites that sell medical marijuana through Illinois’ pilot program. Final work is underway to convert a University Avenue site in Urbana to a dispensary operated by Wheaton-based Nu Med. The company expects to open its doors during the first full week of September.
The site at 105 E. University Avenue, a former Blockbuster Video, was announced months ago by the company formerly known as Nu Med RX, while Champaign-based Phoenix Botanical opened its doors in May.
Ben Rediger is CEO of Education to Grow, which works in partnership with Nu Med. He says it’s moving forward now due in part to an expanded market downstate for medical cannabis.
“There’s a need for more than one business here," he said. "There’s 540,000 people in the district that surrounds Champaign-Urbana, and one dispensary over time will not be able to handle the flow. So there’s plenty of room for us to grow, and bring in patients. And our focus at the dispensary is on medicine and clinical study, and with the university (University of Illinois) here, we thought it was paramount that we get started now as the regulations unfold.”
Rediger also credits Illinois’ expansion of the medical marijuana program, signed by Governor Bruce Rauner earlier this year.
It’s now set to expire in July 2020, with more qualifying conditions, including Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder and terminal illness.
Rediger says Nu Med is already getting inquiries from potential patients. The company expects to open its Urbana site during the first full week of September.
Nu Med is also developing dispensaries in East Peoria and Chicago.