Wareham police develop traffic plan ahead of recreational pot shop opening

WAREHAM, Mass. (WLNE) — Another recreational pot shop is expected to open in Massachusetts next week and Wareham Police are not taking any chances after horrendous traffic outside of other recreational pot shops in the state. The facility is on an already busy street so they’ve come up with a plan to keep traffic away from the shop altogether.

Complicating matters a bit, Verilife on Main Street in Wareham, is right next to Tobey Hospital emergency department. so they can’t afford to have traffic backed up. For the time being customers will not be able to just walk in to the shop, they’ll have to take a shuttle from a parking lot 3 miles away.

It’s the calm before the storm at Verilife pot shop in Wareham.

“Our volume will go up dramatically once we open up to adult use,” says Shelley Stormo, Executive Director of Pharmacannis Massachusetts.

They already sell medical marijuana and are expected to open up for recreational use next week. Other shops in the state had thousands of customers in their first few weeks, creating a nightmare traffic situation. Wareham police have come up with a plan around that.

“This area cannot handle a large influx of traffic so the purpose of the shuttle service is to alleviate that,” says Lieutenant John Gerard.

Patrons will have to park at Water Wizz Water Park on Cranberry Highway. They’ll be given a ticket and take a 5 minute shuttle to the marijuana facility. The ticket is what will get them in the door at Verilife.

“The shuttle buses will be so controlled that it won’t be more than every day traffic and the key is that there will be no walk up traffic here,” says Wareham Police Captain John Walcek.

He says this is the safest plan for the town, especially since the shop is next to a hospital. Hospital representatives have been a part of the conversations.

For customers who may not want to go through all of the hoops, it’s only for the time being. They plan to reevaluate after a month.

”As this becomes more of an errand for people and becomes more normalized in the state of Massachusetts we’re not going to have the people management problem that we will have in the beginning,” says Stormo.

Police say they’ll probably have to limit how many people get into the facility in the first few days.
Meanwhile, Tobey Hospital will be doubling security to make sure people don’t use their parking lot.

(C) WLNE/ABC 6 2018