As pot shops drum up traffic, Leicester officials scramble to find solutions

LEICESTER, Mass. — The lines to buy cannabis stayed steady through the holiday weekend.

That led the selectmen in Leicester to hold an emergency meeting Monday night to discuss traffic concerns.

Cultivate is one of the two recreational marijuana shops that opened for business last Tuesday, the other is in Northampton.

Police say they underestimated the amount of people who would be waiting in long lines, while town officials tried to reassure residents they are working to solve the issue.

While many support Cultivate's right to be open, they say this was poorly planned. One man blamed the Cannabis Control Commission for dumping it in Leicester's lap.

Town officials reminded people they voted to legalize recreational cannabis sales in the state and are hoping traffic will get better once more retail shops open up.

“It will die down over time but our main goal is to address concerns now," said on official.

While Cultivate representatives did not speak on camera, they addressed residents, saying they are going to "continue to work with the neighbors and the town to make this a very safe environment.”

A picture taken on Monday morning shows traffic back up stretching past Mark Castonguay's home a quarter mile up the street from Cultivate.

"Oh it’s been a nightmare, I’m talking hundreds of cars a day," said Castonguay. “Is this traffic ever gonna stop? From 8 in the morning til 8 at night, nonstop.”

>> Green Tuesday: The 1st pot shops in Mass. are open

On Tuesday alone, customers spent more than

on recreational cannabis.%



Stores in Salem, Wareham and Easthampton are expected to open by the end of the year.

December was declared 'Shop Leicester First' month by the town council.